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A Year of Yes: My 9th Alive Day

Today. I. Lived. Waterfalls. Volcanoes. Mountain hikes. Black sand beaches. Cliff walks. Hidden people homes. The North Atlantic. Beauty everywhere.

It marked my 9th Alive Day. 9 yrs ago I ran from an apt bldg fire & lost nearly everything. I almost didn’t make it. At the time, it was the worst day of my life. Now I see it as 1 of the best. That was the start of my journey toward wholeness & healing I didn’t think was possible.

If you told me then that 9 yrs later I’d be in Iceland, a country forged by fire, researching a 2nd book & living a life I never dared imagine, I wouldn’t have believed you. The journey was intense. I had to look at the ugliest parts of myself & not flinch.

I had to learn to stand in my light in my darkest hour. I couldn’t have done it without my wizard of a therapist. He gave me the map & walked beside me every step of the way. I stumbled a lot on that road, & every time I got up & kept going I grew stronger, braver, steadier.

It was in the falling down & getting back up that I learned. It’s how I rebuilt a life that was better than the one that burned away. That journey is the toughest one I’ve ever taken. It made me fearless. It gave me purpose. It showed me grace.

There’s no way I can ever say thank you enough for the gifts I’ve found along the way. All I can do is pay it fwd. That’s what I’ve done for 9 yrs. It’s what I’ll continue to do every day of every year I have left. And I’m grateful for the opportunity to do so.

So if you’re going through something dark that feels difficult to survive, just know you can. We are so much stronger than we think we are. I believe in us.

About Christa Avampato

The short of it: Writer. Health, education, and art advocate. Theater and film producer. Visual artist. Product geek. Proud alumnae of the University of Pennsylvania (BA) and the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia (MBA). Inspired by ancient wisdom & modern tech. Proliferator of goodness. Opener of doors. Friend to animals. Fan of creative work in all its wondrous forms. I use my business skills to create passion projects that build a better world. I’ve been called the happiest New Yorker, and I try hard to live up to that title every day. The long of it: My career has stretched across Capitol Hill, Broadway theatre, education, nonprofit fundraising, health and wellness, and Fortune 500 companies in retail, media, entertainment, technology, and financial services. I’ve been a product developer and product manager, theater manager, strategic consultant, marketer, voice over artist, , teacher, and fundraiser. I use my business and storytelling to support and sustain passion projects that build a better world. In every experience, I’ve used my sense of and respect for elegant design to develop meaningful products, services, programs, and events. While building a business career, I also built a strong portfolio as a journalist, novelist, freelance writer, interviewer, presenter, and public speaker. My writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Huffington Post,,, Royal Media Partners publications, and The Motley Fool on a wide range of topics including business, technology, science, health, education, culture, and lifestyle. I have also been an invited speaker at SXSW, Teach for America, Avon headquarters, Games for Change, NYU, Columbia University, Hunter College, and the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. The first book in my young adult book series, Emerson Page and Where the Light Enters, was acquired by a publisher and launched in November 2017. I’m currently working on the second book in the series. A recovering multi-tasker, I’m equally at home in front of my Mac, on my yoga mat, walking my rescue dog, Phineas, traveling with a purpose, or practicing the high-art of people watching. I also cut up small bits of paper and put them back together as a collage artist. My company: I’m bringing together all of my business and creative career paths as the Founder of Double or Nothing Media: • I craft products, programs, and projects that make a difference; • I build the business plans that make what I craft financially sustainable; • I tell the stories that matter about the people, places, and products that inspire me. Follow my adventures on Twitter at and Instagram at


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