Ep 21: The F Word is Powerful

The F Word is Powerful Podcast Transcript

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Hi I'm doctor Julie Ducharme.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Welcome to the authentically you podcasts.
I'm excited to be back for another round with another amazing authentic person doing some great things before we get started though.

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Dr. Julie Ducharme: All right.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So let's get to our person today who is also she talker and in a really cool group called Bell weather with me.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: This is <unk> tombs.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: She is the vice President of development for the American American heart association.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: An organization that fights heart disease stroke and in turn helps.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Families and communities thrive as a leader on the development team.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Liver and uses her man magnanimous.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Oh, my gosh.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: I'm.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Not saying that right.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: And infectious personally help manage the fundraising team to provide with them.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: The necessary tools and opportunities partnering with influential corporate and community voices.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Her excellent education program, her excellent communication skills have made her a go to for political community government and education program development and she can execute those visions by increasing the visibility and impact of any agency that brings her onboard her reach an effectiveness are exemplified in her.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Most recent designation as an official te es te X speaker inspiring her audience to embrace forgiveness through her own personal story of discovery.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: When she was adopted at age fourteen Laverne, welcome to the show?


Laverne Toombs: Well thank you so much I am really honored to be a part of your part cash on this evening.

Laverne Toombs: Yeah.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: And I'm just so sorry for you to to be a part of she talks and everything we're doing um as these events get closer and closer I get really excited 'cause I know this is your first one to go to but I've been to all of them and uh the empowerment that comes from that my Cup is always overflowing and I just it's like I I feel I'm ready for another one because it's we've been working like crazy.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: You know, we're into the middle of spring and so I'm.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So excited about this and you know, I watch your tax which I absolutely loved.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um as I mentioned to you earlier, we have many many friends who adopted kids and then we have many friends who were adopted and so it really hit home for me being around my friends who we're either adopted or adopted children.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: The different things that they were dealing with that that you talked about uh I love that you you also labeled it the F bomb.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um that's, you know, everyone thinks <unk> the F bomb.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: But you know, you're actually talking about forgiveness.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So can you.

Laverne Toombs: Maybe tell that story.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: About how you learned that you were adopted and and how that impacted you.

Laverne Toombs: Yes.

Laverne Toombs: And thank you so much.

Laverne Toombs: Um again for this opportunity and I'm really excited about a week from now in Houston participating in the she talk as well as listening to the other participants as well.

Laverne Toombs: But um when I was asked to be a part of the tech talk in Delaware.

Laverne Toombs: Um I really was trying to um I didn't have any idea really what I was gonna talk about other than some sort of personal story.

Laverne Toombs: So I I friend of mine and I begin to kind of rainstorm or what that store would be and I thought you know a over the years that I have talked to other individuals that have adopted or adopted a child or children.

Laverne Toombs: How important it is to share with them in early years about their adoption?


Laverne Toombs: Um I was fourteen years old I, never forget it a matter of fact I'm in the process of writing a book and talking a lot about that experience at fourteen a my mother who was an older parent we were from North Louisiana, which is a very rural area in North Louisiana and because she didn't really have the I guess the inside of wisdom in regards to how to tell me that I was adopted basically she just sent me down at the kitchen table told me you know, I have something to tell you and that's what she said you are adopted of course then my check talked I.

Laverne Toombs: Talked about what does that mean I never heard the word adoption.

Laverne Toombs: I had no idea what that meant.

Laverne Toombs: Um till later.

Laverne Toombs: You know.

Laverne Toombs: Um I realize I was trying to figure out.

Laverne Toombs: If are you my mom or you're, not and for fourteen years I called this woman mother.

Laverne Toombs: Right.

Laverne Toombs: And so here you are fourteen, you you don't never heard this word you're confused in your mind and you don't know how to deal with those emotions at fourteen.

Laverne Toombs: So here I am I'm trying to deal with those emotions.

Laverne Toombs: Asked questions.

Laverne Toombs: Weren't able to get the answers.

Laverne Toombs: She told me to read the documents that were on the table I, did my best in doing that, but I still couldn't comprehend what all that meant and because of that I had dealt with a lot of anger and bitterness for years and years towards her and um and it really impacted me um over the years as an adult.

Laverne Toombs: So in my test talked I.

Laverne Toombs: Talked about you know, those emotions that I wasn't able to identified with right until I became an adult and realize that I was Enger a rejection and many other emotions that I carry into my Delta Hood.

Laverne Toombs: Um.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: You know, my my daughter's fourteen, right now and she's an eighth grader junior high and just dealing with emotions hormones I mean junior high is kinda tough as it is um so I can only imagine how that was a bit shocking like you said and not understanding it and throwing that into the that page of your life.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um must have been difficult and you know, I think it's great that you're writing a book about this because like I mentioned I many many friends have adopted and that's always the question when do we tell the kid do we tell them at all.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um and maybe that's a question you can answer if and I know, it's different for everyone, but if it was you when do you think is an ideal time to kind of let the children know about that option.

Laverne Toombs: Well that's a question that is always asked often.

Laverne Toombs: Um when is a good time to tell a child that they're adopted I think um first of all I always tell a parent that they need to seek counseling and get some um professional help in regards to how you go about telling a child that they're adopted and get some professional help as far as guidance on what to say.

Laverne Toombs: And as well as that child from me.

Laverne Toombs: Um I think that if I had been told much earlier, but as well as have gotten some professional help in being understanding understanding that I wasn't a reject that somebody you know, didn't want me or something of that sort or here it is this woman adopted me and I have been misled to believe that she's actually my mother.

Laverne Toombs: Um it it would have been much better I believe but because of the fact that I found out in my teams.

Laverne Toombs: Um it it's just I felt all sorts of feeling rejected and I felt lied to right and um and so with that um it has an actual ripple affect on a person when they find out later in life and as well as not getting the type of help to be able to guide.

Laverne Toombs: You through that process.

Laverne Toombs: So I really don't know the answer as far as when it's a good time to tell 'em a child that they were adopted, but I would say that you don't wait till they're teenager I think that there's a a time in the early years where they can comprehend I understand.

Laverne Toombs: Um that you were adopted and you know, a B C and D in regards to how they were processed that through therapy through some canceling professional counseling.

Laverne Toombs: Yeah.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: I think that's.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Great to know.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: And I I agree with you know, a lot of times you know back in the day I think of of my parents getting counseling with taboo, you know that was something that people did and now it's become so much more acceptable that you know, there's nothing wrong with you getting canceling our therapy it's it's helping you process that and I think it's.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So important for people to know that especially that it's.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Okay, for kids who are learning they're adopted that it's.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Okay.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: To be in therapy or or get the help and help process that cause we can't always you know as a parent I wanna be everything to my kids, but I can't always be everything to my kids there's gonna be some areas that maybe they need someone else to give them some guidance and so I think that's wonderful.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um advice that you're giving um so you know, besides the age factor when you're processing this and you mentioned that you hold on to this for a long time and and that forgiveness where that you talked about the F bomb that you were trying to process it and and I know this may be a really big question and it maybe hard to quantify it down into our timeframe, but how did you move on to the path of forgiveness or what are some tips that that we could guide?


Dr. Julie Ducharme: Maybe some other people who have gone through just like you have you know, learning about adoption and feeling those feelings.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: How did you start kind of processing and figuring out that forgiveness?


Laverne Toombs: Well that's a good question and unfortunately for me it took me a almost twenty plus years to get to that point.

Laverne Toombs: Um and the reason for it is because again I had no one to talk to about this situation.

Laverne Toombs: Um it was hitting and basically I didn't want anyone to know that I was adopted um and the other thing too is the fact that I I thought that I the feelings that I was feeling was okay.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: <unk> and.

Laverne Toombs: Because I was angry and I pointed the finger to her, because it was her fault.

Laverne Toombs: So why should I forgive, but um uh situation occurred in two thousand and five now keep in mind I'm at two thousand, five I'm, forty five years old.

Laverne Toombs: And this happened when I was fourteen years old, so in two thousand, five we had a storm in new Orleans called a Hurricane Katrina I actually evacuated to North Louisiana where my mother was living at the time she's now, eighty eighty one eighty two years old I went to visit her Ah, but beforehand.

Laverne Toombs: As I I, think I was like in my forties um I had gotten some advice from a dear friend where I've new something about what I was feeling was wrong, but I didn't really know what to to do right I didn't know how to express myself so this spiritual minded individual told me that I needed to let go of the past and gave me some direction in regards to how to go about doing that and <unk> talk to talk about the three components right.

Laverne Toombs: That is one.

Laverne Toombs: How first of all I had to learn how to forgive myself?


Laverne Toombs: <unk> number, two is to forgive to the other person and number three being able to let go I didn't know how to not I don't know how to forgive myself.

Laverne Toombs: I didn't know how to give that other person because I blame them for everything that happened in my life as well as being able to let go of the past I didn't know how to do that.

Laverne Toombs: Because again with the past there are a lot of things that happens in your life where you carry a lot of Guild, right.

Laverne Toombs: So that person said if you can learn how to forgive yourself, let go right as well as you know, move on then you begin to be free from those.

Laverne Toombs: Um from those emotions that you're feeling.

Laverne Toombs: So here it is two thousand, five I go, visit my mother and I.

Laverne Toombs: See this woman she's eighty something years old and and I don't know a.

Laverne Toombs: It just can dawn on me that you know, it comes a point in your life where you need to just make that step and I heard that voice from that person said about forgiveness and in other words it dropped F mom on me which was forgiveness.

Laverne Toombs: Um I went to my mother and I asked her to forgive me for um for blaming her for all the challenges and ups and Downs and the failures and all the things that I had gone through in my adult life, which she'd forgive me.

Laverne Toombs: She looks at me, you know with this face, you know, and we became very emotional and she told me she said you know, I love, you and that was the first time that I had ever heard my mother tell me that she loved me because I I'm one of the things is that I never was never believed that I was capable of being loved and I never really understood love and so that's why I had so many fail relationships in my in my early years, because I didn't understand love and so when she told me that she loved me and she told me that she did her best and raising me as her own it just did something to me and it caused me at that point to realize that I had wasted thirty something years of holding on to emotions of anger and better NIST.

Laverne Toombs: Um towards the woman who did the best that she could <unk> and I and I begin to feel really bad of the fact that I had held on that held on to those emotions for.

Laverne Toombs: So long towards someone who did their best and she did and when I think about the woman that I am today.

Laverne Toombs: I credit at all to my mother and I are credit all to her and to this day.

Laverne Toombs: You know, I think about the fact that I have no sense of appreciation.

Laverne Toombs: Um that I was a horrible daughter.

Laverne Toombs: Um that I really did not do what I was supposed to do as a daughter and um but I just thank God that I had the opportunity before she passed on a two years later.

Laverne Toombs: My mother passed away in two thousand, seven April, April fifteenth, two thousand, seven.

Laverne Toombs: Um.

Laverne Toombs: And but she left a wonderful life and but the thing that really got me when she said she said you know, when the good Lord close my eyes for the final time.

Laverne Toombs: I hope and pray that it would be your face that I see before he shut my eyes.

Laverne Toombs: Um and so you know, when she passed away I, remember walking into the funeral home and it was just her and I and I, just begin to relive that moment.

Laverne Toombs: And begin to think got each just thank God that I had the sense and aware with all in the willingness to forget and let go so that was the beginning of a forgiveness and um and then from that you know, lesson learned from there and I'm still less I'm still learning from those lessons in regards to how to go about forgiving people who have done you wrong, but more importantly, it's not so much about forgiving others, but the most important lesson that I learn is how to forgive myself.

Laverne Toombs: <unk>.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: <unk>.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Okay.

Laverne Toombs: And how to let go of past mistakes past decisions.

Laverne Toombs: Bad bad decisions.

Laverne Toombs: Bad choices.

Laverne Toombs: How do you let go and move on and live?


Laverne Toombs: The life and live the very purpose that was assigned just for for me.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: My gosh.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: That's it's, powerful, everything you're saying is.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So powerful and it resonates.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So much with me and I'm.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Sure, it's running with a lot of people, because I'm sure.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: I know I have and many other people have had that moment of how do we forgive someone who has wrong US and hanging on to you know, unforgiving s and anger as you talked about can be so toxic in our lives.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: You know, and um I can definitely relate that life is too short to hang on to something like that.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: You know when you have people in your life pass away, you suddenly realize like wow life is a lot shorter than I thought I thought it was um <unk>.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So I, just think that's powerful.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: What you're saying?


Dr. Julie Ducharme: And you definitely need to write a book.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: 'cause everything you're saying is so powerful I'm really excited for you to be at she talks.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um and just a little side note will you be talking about this or can you give US a little sneak preview of what you'll be covering a at.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: She talks.

Laverne Toombs: <unk> teacher.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: <unk>.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Okay.

Laverne Toombs: Awesome.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: I'm.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So excited [laughter] I am I just you know for those you guys listening like seriously I I know.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Okay.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: I'm the creator of this.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: But I cannot take credit for the amazing woman that we have in this because every time you ladies walk in and you share your story it's just like wow.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Like I'm impacted and it makes change and then it just kind of starts this circle, right.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Like we're connected then we're connecting the more connect.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So I love this.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um and this talk on forgiveness is so important I I think as women in particular we're really hard on ourselves.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um more.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So than our mail counterparts not saying that man aren't Hardin themselves.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: But as women I think we put a lot of expectations cultural expectations on ourselves and we don't need those we're.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So rough on ourselves, right for giving ourselves to.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So hard sometimes um and I always say this I say you know, it's funny how someone who loves US can give US you know, an amazing compliment, right.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: And we kind of brushed it off, but someone who doesn't know, US.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Can say something negative to US someone doesn't notice and doesn't care about US and we will hold on to that for so long, but not hold on to the compliment or the love that has come from that person who loves US and so you know, this is something my fourteen year old daughter is learning a someone says something mean I'm like a <unk>, you don't know them who cares.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Let it go, but mom it was so mean but that's not you you know, and I just noticed that so when you talk about for giving yourself I I agree with you it's a tough stuff, but something that we so desperately need.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So ask you as we come to the close of the podcast is I always ask everyone.

Laverne Toombs: I wanted to.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: If you could go back and ask you are if you could go back and give your younger self advice, what would you tell yourself?

Laverne Toombs: Oh wow.

Laverne Toombs: It's a lot [laughter].

Laverne Toombs: But when I uh I I think understanding my purpose if I, truly understood my purpose in life I would have made a lot of.

Laverne Toombs: A lot of uh a lot of changes a lot a lot of things in my life wouldn't have happened if I understood my purpose.

Laverne Toombs: So what I would tell my younger self is to really seek my purpose.

Laverne Toombs: My mission and my assignment and that I believe that I would've been more focused in regards to fulfilling what I was actually creating <unk>.

Laverne Toombs: Do.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: <unk>.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Yeah.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: That's powerful and what I'm really excited that we have a lot of youth coming to this.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: She talks Conference.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So I'm excited for you to impart that wisdom on them at such a young age.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um because I I it's.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So powerful for our use to find their y.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: You know, and if they can find that early on a you know, I didn't find mine early on either it took me close into my like mid thirties before I really figure out.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: My y and my purpose I'd love to do that for our youth you know, and bring that in and I wanted to quote something that you said in your talk, you said true forgiveness is when you say thank you for the experience and I, just think that's powerful that you're able to say that and hopefully I with your book to you can guide people on how they can eventually say that as well.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um so besides your book and also everything you're doing with the American heart association is there anything else happening that you want US to know about any events.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um are any things like that that we can promote and push a for you for our listeners.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Well.

Laverne Toombs: I appreciate that actually I'm here at the Marriott.

Laverne Toombs: We have a go read for woman luncheon tomorrow a which is a fundraiser, because as you know, heart disease.

Laverne Toombs: Um is the highest killer along a woman and so we're having that much in to raise money to continue it research uh in regards to heart disease and stroke other than that I'm almost finished with my book which you mentioned I should have that finished probably within the next two to three weeks.

Laverne Toombs: Um and hopefully I'll be able to to launch it uh this year.

Laverne Toombs: So I'm really really excited.

Laverne Toombs: This is something that I've been wanting to do for years, but did not didn't believe that I had the uh the uh the abilities or the skill set or the discipline to be able to do it.

Laverne Toombs: Um so but thank God that I finally got the courage to start writing and I'm really excited about it and so I hope I can join you guys as one of the new York times.

Laverne Toombs: Best selling authors, and sell millions of copies, but most importantly, I change and a transferring woman's lives or individuals.

Laverne Toombs: But primarily woman's lives.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Absolutely and we will promote the heck out of that.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So you gotta make sure you tag US.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: We will get it out to all of our she talker.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: And she talker networks.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Um so we'll make sure to do that I'm.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So excited for you I'm so excited for that.

Laverne Toombs: Thank you yeah.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: Hi and thank you so much for being on the show and sharing something that's.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So transparent and vulnerable, because I know that this podcast is gonna resonate with.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So many people and I I appreciate that, cause as I mentioned, we have so many friends who have either adopted or were adopted and this is important for them to learn about.

Dr. Julie Ducharme: So thank you so much for being on the show as I always say live love laugh and always be your authentic self.