I Dreamed About a Hippopotamus in a Lipstick Factory’ is the first book in a new series helping young children deal with impactful life changes. It was inspired by my eight year old daughter Nicole almost sixteen years ago.
After waking from a nap, she told me that she had ‘dreamed about a hippopotamus in a lipstick factory.’ I was so intrigued by the possible messages in those few words, and I couldn’t wait to hear all about it. I soon discovered that it was a dream about friendship and change, two things she has struggled with from an early age. It didn’t matter that her most unusual new friend was a lipstick-wearing hippopotamus. What mattered was that she appeared at the right time to teach my daughter about friendship, acceptance, facing challenges, and finding value in your uniqueness. I knew then that I would write a book about it, and sixteen years later, Nicole’s dream would come to life.
Children face challenges every day, trying to figure out their place in the world. They present themselves in many different forms, especially today. Some may seem smaller than others, but they do have an impact if your child worries as a result. I have had the privilege of speaking with parents at book signings who have asked for more books that could help children work through difficult life situations. As a result, I have compiled a list of topics and life situations that will confront our main character throughout the series. They include adoption, death of a family member/critical illness, bullying, navigating friendships, the impact of social media, managing anxiety/worries, divorce/blended families, dealing with irrational fears, braces/glasses, absentee parents, struggling with learning, social skills/cues/reading body language, and adding a pet to the family. If there are any topics you would like to see added, please reach out through my Contact page.
As a parent raising a child with a learning disability, I have faced my share of challenges in supporting her needs. I have learned a lot in the process, including ways to take better care of me so that I can be fully present for her. It’s like the airplane analogy. When the oxygen mask drops, you can’t help someone else until you take the first breath. There is a lot of help and resources out there for both children and parents, and not just for children with learning disabilities. In today’s world, children seem to struggle more than ever before and getting them to talk about it is the first step. Wherever possible, I will share some of my personal experiences and successes with you and guide you to other resources that you might not have thought of. Remember that you are not alone.