At twelve years old, everything changed for Sheila with the discovery of her estranged father’s porn collection. Found locked away in a corner of the basement, the glossy images ignite in her an unrelenting desire for attention and adoration. Now, reflections on her past as a stripper permeate her thoughts as she takes on the new roles of mother, caregiver and wife. While helping her baby daughter take her first steps, she nurses her mother through the final stages of breast cancer. This powerful and beautiful story is a moving meditation on a woman’s life through her body, motherhood and loss.
Sheila Hageman is the ultimate survivor and risk taker—she’s a former stripper and nude model who became her college valedictorian, a yoga instructor, a writing teacher, an author, a mother and a Body Image Expert. She lives with her husband, three children and three cats in CT. She is an Academic Mentor for Berkeley College. She has taught writing at University of Bridgeport and Housatonic Community College. She has a novel, Beautiful Something Else, out June 24, 2016, from 48Fourteen. Her memoir, Stripping Down, is a meditation on womanhood and body image. Her Decision-Making Guide and Self-Discovery Journal, The Pole Position: Is Stripping for You? (And How to Stay Healthy Doing It), Every Day Create, December 2011, helps women to further value their own identities through their quest to understand their motivations for stripping. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Hunter College, CUNY, where she also graduated as valedictorian with her BA in English. She blogs about her stripper past, motherhood, body image and other women’s issues at StrippingDown.com