Monday, September 17, 2012

Married at Fourteen by Lucille Lang Day

      Married at Fourteen: A True Story  

I would like to welcome Lucille Lang Day to my blog today. 

Her memoir, Married at Fourteen, is a story full of hope and encouragement for those who find themselves in challenging circumstances. Her successful quest for fulfillment in romance, marriage, motherhood, education, and career shows that we need not give up, no matter how far we have veered from our goals.

Lucille Lang Day:

Image of Lucille Lang DayLucille Lang Day is the author of a memoir, Married at Fourteen: A True Story (Heyday), a children's book, Chain Letter (Heyday), and eight poetry collections and chapbooks, including The Curvature of Blue (Cervena Barva) and Self-Portrait with Hand Microscope (BPW&P), which received the Joseph Henry Jackson Award in Literature. She has also co-authored How to Encourage Girls in Math and Science (Dale Seymour) and edited SEEK: Science Exploration, Excitement, and Knowledge (Children's Hospital Oakland). She received her M.A. in English and M.F.A. in creative writing at San Francisco State University, and her M.A. in zoology and Ph.D. in science and mathematics education at the University of California at Berkeley. The founder and director of a small press, Scarlet Tanager Books, she also served for seventeen years as the director of the Hall of Health, an interactive museum in Berkeley.
About the Book:
Lucille Lang Day got married at age 14, gave birth to her first child at 15, divorced her husband at 16, married him again at 17, and left him at 18 to go back to school. Today she is an award-winning poet and holds an M.A. in English and M.F.A. in creative writing from San Francisco State University, an M.A. in zoology and a Ph.D. in science and mathematics education from the University of California at Berkeley.

Guest Post by Lucille Lang Day:

Finding Oneself

By Lucille Lang Day

One way of looking at my memoir, Married at Fourteen: A True Story, is to see it as a book about overcoming obstacles and achieving self-transformation. The book contains the stories from my own life that show how I did this myself, again and again. I think my experiences are relevant to everyone, because most of us want pretty much the same things: romantic love, positive family relations, education, a career, financial security, and good health. Unfortunately, external and internal obstacles often stand in our way—for example, poverty, an abusive spouse or parent, our own earlier misguided choices or behavior, or personality traits such as quickness to anger or lack of self-confidence.

My odyssey through obstacles began when I was twelve, when I decided I wanted to get married to get away from my emotionally abusive mother. When I fell in love and married at fourteen, I thought I was the luckiest girl in the world, a sort of modern fairy tale princess embarking on a lifetime of romantic bliss. As it turned out, my marriage was far more imprisoning than living with my parents had been. Only after dropping out of school after eighth grade and giving birth to my first child at fifteen, did I realize what a rut I was in. I couldn’t even get the lowest of jobs without lying about my education. My choices had not set me on course for a rewarding life.

Being a junior high dropout was a huge obstacle to ever having financial security or an interesting career, and being married to another dropout, who turned out to be insecure and both physically and emotionally abusive, was an obstacle to having a happy home life. My problems were of such magnitude that I couldn’t figure out the best course of action on my own and therefore turned to a marriage and family therapist when I needed help.

Even after I finished high school and college and was accepted into a graduate program in zoology, my troubles weren’t over. There are many ways a marriage or romantic relationship can go awry, and I experienced several of them before finally getting it right in 2002, when I married my current husband—forty years after my search for true love began!

Lest it sound like all my own obstacles were external, I will say right now that they were not. As a teenager, I overindulged in alcohol and was anorexic and clueless about the way the world works on top of it. Also, I was na├»ve about romantic love and unable to assess a relationship’s potential well into adulthood.

I hope my story will give other women the courage to get away from abusive spouses, pursue their educational and career goals, and overcome their own shortcomings. I lost myself when I got married at fourteen, but I found myself again. I think others can find their lost selves, too, and that this is the most important search we can ever undertake, not only for ourselves, but also for our children.

A Giveaway!!!
Lucille has graciously offered a copy of Married at Fourteen to be given to one lucky commenter. Just leave a comment with your email - for contact purposes - to be eligible.

I would love for you to also share why you enjoy reading memoirs. I look forward to reading your comments.

Married at Fourteen and other books by Lucille Lang Day can be purchased at Amazon:

I will be reviewing this book at a later date. I invite you to follow my blog so you don't miss it.

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  1. Thanks for sharing Lucy! Your story and life is an inspiration to me and I hope it will be for all readers who have pursued their dreams against all odds and learned that in making mistakes they eventually found their way to live life on their own terms.

  2. Lucille,

    Your writing and life is inspirational. I have immensely enjoyed all that I have read. Your support of Stephen and myself over the years is sincerely appreciated. Love to you, Judy L. Brekke

  3. Thanks so much, Judy. I hope I'll get to meet you in person someday. In the meantime, love to you, too. Lucy

  4. A really fantastic interesting storyline, I would love to read this novel.

    cenya2 at hotmail dot com


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