About Lauren

{For information about Lauren’s new book, “Where Did My Sweet Grandma Go?”, click here.}

Howdy, I’m Lauren Flake!

Welcome to my love story.

I live near Austin, Texas, where I was born and raised, with my handsome husband, our two precious daughters and two ridiculous Labrador retrievers.

I am a Christ follower, a seventh generation Texan, a recovering perfectionist and an Alzheimer’s daughter.  I’m passionate about yoga and Pilates, Tex-Mex and Margaritas, dancing to western swing with the hubs, cooking and gardening with my girls, collecting antiques, essential oils, anything turquoise, dark chocolate, hot tea, and, of course, writing!

I also love honoring my mom’s legacy through raising funds and awareness for my favorite causes.

Last summer, my #texasstrong shirts raised nearly $150,000 for central Texas flood relief. Since then, we’ve raised thousands more dollars for various central Texas causes, including Alzheimer’s Texas and Breast Cancer Resource Centers of Texas.

handsome hubby

Why I write…

I have always felt an affinity for the written word and a deep need to communicate!

As a kid, I devoured books, wrote short stories and often created my own family newsletters.  As a teenager, I loved reading magazines and dreamed of writing articles or even publishing my own magazine one day.

I guess it was only natural that I was drawn to blogs and social media as a young adult.

“She wore her heart on her sleeve ’cause she found it there.” – Bob Schneider

I began blogging in 2009, about a year after I married the love of my life.  We had just moved my mother, Dixie, who was rapidly deteriorating in the moderate stages of Alzheimer’s disease, into a nursing facility.  At first, the blog was a place to update friends and family about her condition but it quickly became a place to process my emotions as I grieved.

alzheimers grieving process
With my mom on my oldest daughter’s due date 2012

My mother passed away in 2013, a few months before her 60th birthday, after fighting Alzheimer’s disease for more than 10 years.  She was my mentor, teacher and best friend.

Celebrating every blessing

Losing my mother forced me to rely on God’s strength instead of my own.  I am learning more and more to cherish the past but live in present, to never take my blessings for granted, to love my husband and daughters like there’s no tomorrow.

A few months after she died, I wrote a letter to my mom that was featured on BlogHer:

In a way, your illness prepared me for motherhood.  Your disease taught me to abandon perfectionism and seek beauty in little everyday things.  You became like an innocent and dependent child who required love, patience, understanding and constant attention.  In many moments, I think I actually saw glimpses of you as a child–sweet, joyful and sensitive.

loving myself

That was the turning point in my healing process and in finding my calling as a writer.

I learned to be vulnerable and honest with my readers about my struggles. I learned to build community.  I learned to be brave.

This blog is a piece of my mother’s legacy, a place where I document the joys and heartaches of my journey as a daughter, wife, mother and believer.  Here, I journal my lessons and my blessings, in hopes of encouraging others in their struggles.

How we live now, going forward, is part of her legacy.

These are a few of my favorite posts:

My Mother in the Mirror: A Legacy of Depression

Dear Mom: You Were My First Blessing

Slow Motion: The Alzheimer’s Grieving Process

This is where I contribute:

The Huffington Post

The Mighty

Love,

Lauren

5 comments

  1. Sheryl Woolverton says:

    Lauren, I found your blog via Blogher and so loved your You were My First Blessing Post. I am also blogging my way through grief after my own mother’s death in February 2013 and have found the experience valuable. Thank you for your words!

  2. Heather Naples says:

    Hi Lauren, I love your work and I’m looking for a local Austin illustrator who could help with a project for my children. Please contact me when your free! Thank you! ~heather

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