Local woman contributes to book

Published 7:31 pm Saturday, June 25, 2016

A Suffolk woman has contributed to a book that encourages women to succeed in different areas of their lives.

Tonya Swindell, an occupational therapist at the Hampton VA Medical Center and a columnist for the Suffolk News-Herald, said Caretha Crawford, a friend of hers, came up with the idea for the book and asked various women to write about different aspects of their lives.

Some of the topics in the book, “Determined to Succeed: Power Principles to Get What’s Yours,” included higher education, climbing the career ladder, friendship, going through divorce or illness, and being a caregiver to a loved one.




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Swindell chose to write about her home life.

“The one that stood out to me was home life, because of how challenging it is for me,” Swindell said. “I’m a mom, a wife, I have four children, and I work full-time.”

Swindell’s children include 5-year-old twins, an 8-year-old and an 11-year old. Her husband travels frequently for work.

“I just tried to talk about some of the daily challenges of getting everybody off to school,” Swindell said. “Then there’s the sporting events, balancing time with the children, making time for my husband, and then making time for myself.”

Swindell said she tried to share and be transparent about her life in the book.

“I shared a real-life story,” she said. She related the events of a day when her husband was out of town and her son had a medical emergency.

“We all went to the emergency room,” she said. “By the time I got back home that morning, my mother-in-law had driven three hours and was in my driveway. This is how it gets done, because there are people that are willing to come help and love us.”

Swindell also discussed how her faith guides her daily life.

“I spend time most mornings with the Lord, reading the Bible and praying before the rest of the day starts,” she said. “That kind of kicks things off for me.”

The book already is available on Amazon, and the print edition launches this month.

Swindell said she was happy to be included in the book.

“I was thankful for the opportunity to be able to share with readers and encourage other people,” she said. “How to balance it all is the biggest challenge.”