I found success, as defined by society, when I immigrated to the United States from Italy in my early twenties.
In just a short two years I became a top sales performer for Xerox first and Apple Computer second, in the greater San Francisco Bay.
I had money, an expensive condo, and friends. The world was my oyster and I felt on top of the world.
In my early 30s I married, had a daughter, and soon realized the impossibility of holding down a highly demanding job while raising a family (on top of manning a new big house). Since I also wanted to do my best as a new wife and a new mom, my days became almost twice as long and I found myself exhausted and often unhappy.
But hiring a full-time nanny was not an option (I knew instinctively that I could have never had a stranger raise my kid), I abandoned my career to stay home until she turned two and I had to return to work due to financial pressures.
The work I found was nothing like my previous, and even though I had the freedom to leave at a decent hour, my role and my responsibilities were nothing like what I had in the past.
I possessed no freedom or understanding of how to change my life, and navigated the best I could between endless chores at home to a job I despised, to a marriage that was fast deteriorating due to the stressors and the disagreements involved.
To make matters worse, I had grown up poor parenting and believed that to be appreciated in life one had to comply with others’ dictates, especially men, since my father was hardly present. For more than two decades I strived to make my boss happy, my husband happy, even my doctor (a male too) happy, and to be “the good girl” that my community and my family desired me to be.
But inside I was dying and no longer felt even a hint of pleasure or desire.
When I became pregnant with my second child I began to bleed early on in the pregnancy. But because I didn’t trust that quitting my job and staying home—which was what my intuition was suggesting—would bring me the approval of anyone, (and had developed no faith in an Universe that supports us when we chose to love ourselves) I stayed on the job.
At six months of pregnancy, the baby was born prematurely and died on his way out.
This tragedy hit me like a wall from a high-speeding racecar. I knew I had arrived somewhere from which there was no return. No illusion of possessions, jobs, relationships or else could help me anymore.
I had to find another way to live and find happiness.
I quit my job and became very quiet (except with my daughter of five years old). The significance of what had happened was too much to be dismissed by idle chattering or excuses. Something had to change.
Slowly and painfully, I re-emerged through the help of spiritual tomes, which gave me hope that God exist and that everything has a purpose.
Later, I returned to school for a degree in Women Study, to understand how and why women face drastic and destructive choices like mine. I was validated by the sheer number of stories and the tragic history behind the making of women who had the courage to confront and defy the system in which we live and lived. I then obtained a Master in Transpersonal Psychology, thanks to which I completed my education to become a Life Coach and to help other women in similar predicaments.
Time healed the wounds, education gave me knowledge and introspection was instrumental in finding out who I was/am in essence and how to achieve happiness.
I am now a fully certified Transpersonal Life Coach and happily share my time between Rome (Italy), New York and San Francisco.
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A native of Florence, Italy, Lauretta immigrated to the United States in her 20s. Within months, she became a former sales producer for Xerox, then catapulted her way to an international marketing position at Apple, where she represented the corporation’s pioneering technology to Fortune 50 companies as an award-winning Senior Account Executive.
Shortly after her daughter Isabella was born, Lauretta became a training director in the hospitality business and fostered community projects in the San Francisco Bay Area.
But it wasn’t the professional successes that defined who she is today.
When she married and had her daughter, she realized that raising a child in our culture, while trying to maintain a profession in a very fast-paced environment and holding on to some kind of balance was close to impossible. When she lost her baby son at birth, due to the high level of stress and fatigue, she realized that something had to change. She quit her corporate job and began exploring the thematics of her turbulent youth—and the depression, anxiety, and fear of abandonment that followed—through traditional therapy, spiritual practices, and education.
She returned to school to obtain a Bachelor in Women Studies—in her attempt to understand why women always seem to do more and work more—followed by a Master in Transpersonal Psychology.
Along the way, she found that many women felt as she did—fragmented, unsettled, overwhelmed, and conflicted in their attempts to reconcile their professional goals with their domestic obligations.
On her journey towards becoming a career and life coach, she rediscovered the vital parts of herself that had been discarded during her childhood and in her 25+ years of working in corporate America, ultimately allowing her to transcend her limiting thoughts and behaviors and thrive.