Weiss: Carvelli - Making Lemonade Out of Life’s Lemons

Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Herb Weiss, GoLocalProv Guest MINDSETTER™

Author and life coach Linda Carvelli believes that everything in life has a purpose and that resilience will get you through any obstacle in your path. She succinctly illustrates this philosophy in her 340 page memoir, “Perfectly Negative: How I Learned to Embrace Life’s Lemons Lessons.” The self-published book details how she faced personal and family tragedy over a decade of deep emotional pain only to realize that each devastating life experience gave her more courage and strength to face the next one.

Carvelli a Warren resident, dedicated over twenty years of her professional career to computer technology and project management before writing her first full-length memoir, published in 2016, that reveals how she ultimately came to terms with her life’s mission. That is helping people overcome and learn from the challenges in their daily lives. As a board certified life coach, she brings lessons from her book to people to help them regain control of their lives, discover new perspectives, create more options, and move forward with confidence and courage.

Facing Your Own Life Lemons Lessons

Perfectly Negative introduces a cast of real, relatable characters who will have you crying, laughing, and ultimately rejoicing in Carvelli’s triumph and determination to make sense of the overwhelming heartbreak she endured. This insightful memoir reveals nuggets of wisdom to reassure you as you face your own life lemons lessons.

The inspirational tome follows Carvelli’s forty-six years, through her idyllic childhood growing up in a close-knit Italian household into her later years where she faced a decade’s worth of personal and professional losses. It begins when the native Cranston resident was focused on planning her first marriage in 1996 and received the news of her mother being re-diagnosed with breast cancer, ultimately leading to her death two years later.. Six months later, the memoir details her sister’s diagnosis of breast cancer and how she lived with this devastating disease for seven years. Like her mother and sister, Carvelli was also diagnosed with breast cancer, although she ultimately made a decision to have a double mastectomy. She also experienced a divorce, left a long-term relationship shortly before her father died, and finally was laid off her job.

This book is for all ages and anyone who is overcoming obstacles. Carvellli’s first full length book detailing her overcoming life challenges, is getting rave reviews, too.

Here’s a review from a judge at the 24th Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards: “It’s unputdownable! From the first paragraph, author Linda Carvelli draws in the reader with tightly focused, well-written scenes and immediately identifiable characters. Even though this family is well-to-do with all the material trappings, they have heartbreak galore with “four cancer diagnoses, three deaths, two divorces and a significant other turned not-so-significant” not to mention job and friendship upheavals and a medium who helps provide some much-needed spiritual anchoring. These can be anyone’s friends, family and significant others, regardless of race, creed or socioeconomic status.”

The judge adds, “By interweaving several plot lines and balancing suspense – and using plain but power language with a much needed dollop of objectivity – this book avoids the mawkish self-pity and excessive detail that can be the undoing of similar attempts. It’s like sitting down with a best friend and catching up on the latest news–before one knows it two hours have passed and there’s still more to discuss.”

Another reviewer said, “I thought this was going to be depressing but boy was I wrong.”

A Decade Worth of Learning

Looking back, “my life was a mess,” said Carvelli. What surprised the 14-year cancer survivor the most was that when she eventually reflected on that most painful decade of her life, she realized that each tragic event gave her more courage and strength to successfully face the next one, she says.

Carvelli remembers that after ending a seven year relationship she took a solo-vacation to Jamaica to just refocus and stabilize her life. She rediscovered journaling, a healing activity that she took up earlier in her life to detail the decade of upheavals. An audio book, “The Shack,” an inspirational story where the protagonist overcomes personal tragedy and finds faith again, gave Carvelli food for thought and insight on her life’s journey.

“I realized that when I was in the midst of each tragedy I just did what I had to do to get through it,” says Carvelli, noting that “I lived in the present moment.” But, looking back she found herself surprised with the realization that she survived some tough events.

“Only then did I realize “the intensity” of the experiences.

Carvelli’s personal life stabilized a bit when she got engaged in 2011. Although she had found her true love, a lump in her breast discovered a week before being let go from her job in brought back anxiety and fear she remembered when being initially diagnosed with cancer. It was losing her job and the result of the medical test that inspired her to write the book.

“At first I was angry about losing my job because I was really good at what I did,” said Carvelli, who quickly acknowledged the job loss and accepted it when she realized, “It gave me time to begin writing the book I always wanted to,” she said.

With a supportive fiancé and all the free time Carvelli began the writing process. With the help of a writing coach, using old journals of the tragic decade and recent writings, a book slowly took shape. Over four years, four completed drafts combined with a final edit would lead to her self-published memoir released last year.

The Power of Resilience

“When I finished writing the last chapter of my memoir, the reason for my existence stared me in the eyes and ignited a fire in my heart. My life’s purpose is to serve as an example of resilience,” says Carvellli.

Author Carvelli has added certified life coach to her professional skillset to bring the insights and tips from her book to people, helping them move forward in the midst of life’s tragedies. Carvelli, 51, says that her life journey has given her clarity about her purpose on earth. “Coaching and managing people through business and personal changes is why I was put here, it is my life’s purpose,” she says.

Lemons can be a great teacher in your life. Carvelli shares these lessons in her memoir and also on her blog.

The Rhode Island author has also published a short story, “I Miss My Breasts” in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Hope and Healing for Your Breast Cancer Journey. She co-facilitates an informal support group, Sisters in Survival, for cancer survivors and their caregivers. Originally from Cranston, RI, she currently lives in Warren with her husband, two step-teens and Enzo Vino, the family dog who follows Carvelli everywhere..

“Perfectly Negative” is available online at Amazon.com. To arrange an interview or schedule a book signing or inspirational talk, click here or email [email protected]

Herb Weiss, LRI’12 is a Pawtucket writer covering aging, health care and medical issues. To purchase Taking Charge: Collected Stories on Aging Boldly, a collection of 79 of his weekly commentaries, go to herbweiss.com.

  • Inside Man

    Russell Carey - A name few outside of Brown’s campus know, but Carey is the power source at the Providence Ivy League institution. 

    Today, his title is Executive Vice President and he has had almost every title at Brown short of President. Carey is a 1991 graduate of Brown and has never left College Hill.

    While Brown’s President Christine Paxson — who is functionally invisible in Rhode Island — is managing alumni affairs and fundraising, Carey is influencing almost everything in Rhode Island.

     
  • Top Raimondo Appointment

    Nicole Alexander-Scott - MD, MPH, and rock star in the making. As Director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, she is fast developing a reputation as someone in the Raimondo Administration who can get things done. Her counsel and leadership on developing a strategy on opioid addiction has been widely been lauded.

    In addition, she has handled the mundane - from beach closings to food recalls - with competency. An expert in infectious disease, it may be time for her to become a strong leader on Zika.

     
  • The CEO

    Ronald Machtley - Bryant University's President rightfully deserves to be on a lot of lists, but what few understand is that Machtley’s influence extends far beyond Bryant’s campus in Smithfield. Machtley could make this list as a business leader or as a political force as much as for education.

    Machtley is recognized for transforming Bryant University from a financially struggling regional college to a university with a national reputation for business.

    Machtley serves on Amica’s Board and the Rhode Island Foundation, and also serves on the Board of Fantex Brands.

     
  • Power Broker

    Larry Purtill - While Bob Walsh gets the face time as the Executive Director in the media for the NEA of Rhode Island, NEARI President Purtill tends to be the inside man who gets things done.

    The teachers' largest union is formidable, but is still reeling from the beat down it took when Gina Raimondo’s pension reform cut the benefits of teachers disproportionately over other employee groups. 

    Make no mistake about it - not much happens in education in Rhode Island without Purtill's sign-off.

     
  • Visionary

    Mim Runey - While Rhode Islanders wait, and wait some more, for development on the 195 land, Johnson and Wale's University's Runey is watching it come to fruition, as JWU is set to open the first completed building on the former Interstate on September 1, when it will host a ribbon cutting for its John J. Bowen Center for Science and Innovation. 

    Under Runey, JWU continues to establish its foothold as one of the country's top schools for culinary training. Now Runey will oversee the addition of the new building on the old 195 which will house the university's School of Engineering and Design and its biology program. 

    In 2015, students from the School of Engineering & Design participated in the construction of the Holocaust Memorial on South Main Street, a collaboration between the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island and the Holocaust Education Resource Center of Rhode Island.

    A true community partner in every sense, JWU under Runey's watchful eye is expanding to an even greater presence in Providence. 

     
  • Chairman of the Board

    Edwin J. Santos - The former banker is Chairman of the Board of CharterCare, after having been a top executive at Citizens Bank. He has been a board leader for Crossroads, Washington Trust, Rocky Hill School -- you name it and Santos has helped to lead it.

    His best work to date just might be at CharterCare, where he has helped the once fledgling hospital (Roger Williams Medical Center) into a growing hospital system.

     
  • Lion Tamer

    Weber Shill - He serves as the Chief Executive Officer of University Orthopedics, or in other words, dozens and dozens of oh-so-confident docs.

    Shill has a background in Engineering and a Masters in Business Administration from the Whitemore School at the University of New Hampshire. Experienced in managing medical groups, but this group is big and influential.

     
Delivered Free Every
Day to Your Inbox