In one of my first visits to Thistle Farms, a non-profit organization in Nashville, a woman in the program told our group a story.

When she was 12, her mom trafficked her to her drug dealer. She traded her for drugs and for the next two decades she was prostituted across the country.

Geranium pouringI have an 11-year-old daughter. Hearing stories like that is overwhelming.

How do you not respond when you bump into something like that?

The problem is that the issues seem so complex and impossible to solve. We’re talking about homelessness, drug addiction and prostitution. Where do you even start? Can one person even make a difference?

But then you meet Becca Stevens, the founder of Thistle Farms. Then you see a Thistle Farms product at Whole Foods that the women in the program have made with a label that says “Love Heals.” Then you hear the 12-year-old girl who is now in her 30s tell a different story. A story of hope. A story of handmade candles. A story of healing. And you realize it’s not impossible. For 18 years this organization has been giving women new stories, new jobs and new homes.

Hope like that is contagious and the first time I went to Thistle Farms, I knew we were going to do something awesome together someday.

Well, now it’s time.

On Friday, August 14th, I’m holding an event at Thistle Farms in Nashville called, “Brighter!”

I’ll be sharing about how we all get Do Over moments in life. (You may have noticed a tweet or 1,000 about how keen I am on the idea of starting over.) I’ll be talking about the time I lost my creative voice and what it took to get it back. And I’ll be challenging you to use your voice, too. I’ll also be giving you a sneak peek at a project I’ll be launching this fall.

Hope CandlesThere will be music, food and a lot of fun. Best of all, all the proceeds will go to Thistle Farms.

Space at the beautiful Thistle Stop Café is limited, so don’t wait to buy tickets.

Buy yours right here!

On Saturday, August 15, from 8AM – 12PM Jenny and I will also be making candles with the Thistle Farms team. Our goal is to finish 2,000 candles. I’m pretty sure I can do 500 an hour by myself, but I’m terrible at estimating things. It would probably be better if you were there too. If you’d like to join us there are a few volunteer spots open. Email Stacye to RSVP!

If you’ve ever been to one of my events before you know how fun they are. If you haven’t, this is the perfect one to check one out. Grab your ticket right here!

Sometimes, the world feels dark, but it doesn’t have to be. It’s not impossible to make it brighter. All it takes is a candle and a little bit of hope.