If my body hadn't physically forced me to stop dead in my tracks, I don't think I ever would have reconnected with my most authentic and creative self. As much pain as I’m in now, it’s nothing compared to living the way I was before.
I spent my adult life chasing the American Dream and choosing the safest bets. I grew up blue-collar and went on to get a bachelor’s and master’s degree, believing that if I kept my head down, worked hard, and followed a traditional path, I would be rewarded with a well-paying job and a stable life. My only goal was to do well for myself while doing good for my community.
But that’s not how it worked out — I ended up at different points on food stamps, receiving subsidized health benefits, and I hit rock bottom more than once. When my body failed me, it didn’t just change one aspect of my life. It changed everything. It forced me to reevaluate what I wanted and how I wanted to live.
Life as I knew it is over, but I’m just getting started. Today I’m a recovering nonprofit professional, podcast cohost, author, and entrepreneur living with chronic pain and invisible illnesses.
Nowadays you can find me:
Promoting and marketing my first book
Working on my second book, on medical gaslighting
Co-hosting a rapidly-growing podcast for non-mons
Building a successful home-based business and coaching others on how to do the same
Consulting with individuals on copywriting that helps them express their truest self
Chronicling my health and entrepreneurship journey on my blog, Nerdzilla Lives.
Above all else: I am a survivor — of sexual trauma and physical abuse, traumatic accidents, and a tough upbringing. I’m a woman who took control of her life and built a life and business that is in line with my most authentic self.
Why you should trust this Nerdzilla with your mess:
Kelly Mendenhall is recovering nonprofit professional living in Middle Tennessee. A Southeast Michigan native, Kelly received her Bachelors of Science and Masters in Public Administration from Eastern Michigan University, determined to change the world for the better by working in the nonprofit sector.
Kelly relocated to Nashville, Tennessee, in 2013 in pursuit of life, liberty, and gainful employment. In 2017, Kelly became medically disabled and unable to work outside the home. It was then that she became reacquainted with her former, creative self and dreamt again of becoming of a published writer.
Kelly is an author and entrepreneur living with chronic pain and invisible illness(es.) Her mission is to show the world that a medical diagnosis does not have to mark the end of one’s story.
Kelly is a freelance writer, a virtual entrepreneur in network marketing, and co-host of the podcast A Non Mom Happy Hour.