We had the good fortune of connecting with Michelle De Miranda and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Michelle, what’s the most important thing you’ve done for your children?
When I started my magazine – I had just endured a very painful divorce and all 3 of my children lost a very important person in their life. They not only endured the abandonment themselves, but then had front row seats to their mom’s world come crumbling down. As much as we smile through the tears and hide the aches and fears as much as we can from our children, we all know they are usually much smarter and more in-tuned with the energy around them then we think. It was one of the most pivotal moments of my life. And in all honesty, it wasn’t easy, and I struggled every single day to dry my tears, lick my wounds and decide to carry on. And I had to continue to decide every single morning when my eyes opened, before my feet hit the floor. I had to decide to get up, show up and not give up – some days were more challenging than others. Those moments, as dark as they may feel at the time, are also the moments your children will reflect on the most, especially when they encounter their own storms in life. It isn’t the accomplishments that inspire – its knowing what people have had to endure to reach those accomplishments that have the greatest impact on others. It was then I realized as hurt and broken as I felt, I was also blessed, because I got to start over, and I could be and do anything that i wanted. I had a blank canvas before me. Often times we are so focused on the rearview mirror, on the loss, the change, the heartache, that we forget the vast open road ahead of us filled with endless possibilities and blessings. My children watched me start my journey to truly find out who I was and also who I wanted to be. Its been a journey of evolution these last few years. But if nothing else, if my magazine doesn’t help one person, or if my foundation doesn’t serve one soul, I at least know that my 3 souls watched their mother fight. They watched her cry and then pray and carry on. They watched their exhausted mother sit in front of a computer until all hours of the night writing an article or building a website, cleaning the house, making meals, hosting events, doing interviews. They watched me fight my way back to a life I deserved – they watched me find the strength inside of me and do whatever it took to build a life we all deserved. And on top of that, they get to be a part of something bigger than all of us. At the end of the day it doesn’t matter how successful we are, if we are sharing that with others and lifting them up as we go. We now get to serve others as a family – deliver blessing bags to the homeless, raise money for sex-traffic victims, and help many others in need! They have had the blessing of watching something beautiful built on a pile of hurt, anger, tears and broken hearts – they’ve seen forgiveness, compassion and empathy. If nothing else, they’ve seen a life saved right before their eyes!

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My art is my writing. Writing is very special to me as I have been doing it for as long as I remember and not just in school when asked or always for professional reasons. At first, my writing, was my therapy. It helped me heal from a lot of child-hood trauma. I have learned that we have so much darkness, light, fear, love, joy, sadness all swimming inside of us from days past – sometimes it can get so heavy it can hinder our progression, but when we use those things in an art form, our pain becomes a masterpiece, and our sadness and sorry can become something beautiful that inspires others. I went through abuse and dark moments as a child that most people will never have to face, let alone a child with limited understanding of such things at such a young age. If it wasn’t for putting those complex emotions, thoughts, memories on paper, id still be dancing with my demons. Instead I use those challenges to create something beautiful to hopefully inspire and empower others. We all have a story, most of the stories are complex and messy yet it is the messy parts that teach us the most. If I can take someone’s pain and messy parts and create something beautiful for them and for other’s, then I am winning and I am living my purpose.

there are days my mind is swimming and words just aren’t working. there are moments my own thoughts get in the way of creating something beautiful or someone else. Its perseverance that makes the difference. Walking away, learning how to sit quietly with yourself and regroup, reconnect with your soul and then start again.

My story – is mine. Its raw, its messy, it is dark, it is complex, it is beautiful – and from that story, came my brand. It is not only my purpose, it is a huge part of who I am and what has made me – me.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Arizona is a beautiful state and I love the ‘valley of the sun’. One of the things the Phoenix valley is known for are our sunsets. Dust creates magical sunsets, and we all know deserts have a lot of that. There are hikes all over the valley that take you out of the hustle and bustle, take you above it, to get away from the noise and just enjoy the beauty, the serenity. Camelback is the most well-known hikes here, but there are countless from Squaw Peak, North Mountain, Dreamy Draw and Pinnacle Peak. I am all about nature, especially when home is a city. Its necessary to reconnect. Second, I am all about the hidden gems. Downtown Phoenix is full of them. Years ago, it was dangerous to visit downtown unless you were going to a sporting game or very specific destination, so there wasn’t much desire to explore or spend any unnecessary time there. Now, its a never ending adventure, from hidden speak-easy’s, to parks with live music and underground restaurants and bars that replicate trains and other various things. The Pemberton is one amazing spot that I accidently found a few weeks ago. Its essentially an artistic trailer park – a community collective that provides unique experiences via outdoor food trucks, a coffee shop, restaurants, bars, movie theatre, yoga, personal training, a variety of fitness classes, and arts and entertainment. Its like one surprise after another all right there together sprinkled with an artistic touch.

Scottsdale is the actual city I reside in and it is filled with amazing restaurants, wine rooms and live music venues. From Sorso the wine room to Ocean Club for the seafood tour in the desert to Copper Blues for a night of music – you never run out of places to see here in this city.

Then if you venture 20 min north you are in cave creek, stepping back into the old west. Riding horses down the main road and tying them up at a local pub is completely normal and fun. Rodeo days take place up there and its like stepping out of the lavish big city and into the down -home country. I am a native to AZ and proud to be.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
They say it takes a village – and its really does. The one thing I have come to understand is its ok to have help, to learn from others, to lean on other and to rely on others. Most great entrepreneurs and business leaders have had help – plain and simple. My children – first and foremost. They have been so supportive and have stepped up to help each other when I have had to work late or been away on events. My youngest has Down Syndrome so it really has taken more than a village to raise her – more like a small city. But my boys help with the house, babysitting, meals and even my events. they have been my inspiration and support. I have an amazing support system of friends that have helped volunteer their time for events and have believed in me and my vision even during moments I struggle with that belief. without a great support system it can be very challenging to reach new levels and really follow your dreams.

Last – I thank the Lord – I am a devoted Christian and know that God has been with me every step of the way. there have been moments of complete fear – in my limited understanding its very difficult to see the outcome, but God sees all and can make a way out of impossible. I have seen that time and time again and know it is very real. Without Him, his grace, guidance, mercy and love, I would not have Miranda Girl Magazine or Miranda Girl Foundation!

Website: www.mirandagirlmagazine.com

Instagram: @themirandagirl or @mirandgirlmagazine

Linkedin: Michelle De Miranda

Twitter: @MichelleDeMira2

Facebook: www.facebook.com/mirandagirlmagazine

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCiATJMOlfK19e2oeCrXurEQ

Image Credits
-Steven Fellheimer Photography

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