Writing is my passion and my saving grace, as I discovered in 2014. ♥

Life can change in an instant. Chances are, if you’re 20 years or older, you know this truth. Life, in its majestic wonder, can sometimes be unkind with its paths of uncertainty and forced goodbyes. In the blink of an eye, all that was once familiar, secure, and steady is now out of reach. No misdeeds necessary. No signature required. The current suddenly shifts, setting us adrift in uncharted waters with no map or plan of rescue.

Without knowing it, my journey as a writer actually began 25 years ago when life’s current suddenly shifted after I sustained a spinal cord injury as the result of a car accident. It wasn’t until 22 years later, however, that I discovered its magnificent power. Writing my first poem ignited the light that guided me home.

August 30th marked 25 years since the car accident that forever changed my life. On this day, in 1992, I sustained a spinal cord injury returning home after a fun weekend away with friends. I was 18 years old and just four days shy of starting University. Life changed in an instant. Thankfully, the driver and other two passengers were okay. I fractured two vertebrae in my neck (C5 & C6) and lost all movement and sensation from my neck down. Instead of University, I spent the next nine months in the hospital and rehabilitation centre.  It was tough, and looking back on that time is rather surreal. I fought every day to regain movement and independence I once took for granted. Moving my toe was indeed cause for celebration. It was hope – my heart’s currency. The doctors were cautious and said I probably wouldn’t walk again. I know they meant well, after all, few people did recover, but I did walk away from that rehabilitation centre. The injury did not leave me without challenges, though. I never regained full mobility. I require a crutch to walk and always will, but it was a victory considering the odds against it.

The sudden loss of my mom in 1997 nearly broke me. She was only 50 when she died, and I miss her every day. Lives changed in an instant.

I’ve had the privilege of working in the counselling field for approximately 15 years. I’ve seen lives change in an instant, and over time I absorbed the loss too. But I’ve also witnessed the remarkable power of the human spirit.

Loss, in any form, is painful (family, friends, health, mobility, love…). We know the agony of it because we live and love deeply. Simply put…if it doesn’t hurt, it probably didn’t matter. I cried many tears for the losses in my life. It was never a burden, but a true testament to the joy and love that existed.  I wouldn’t change the course because of the outcome. It was worth it.

Today, I write this with a smile and a grateful heart because my journey has been a remarkable one, an incredible voyage of self-discovery. I tell you this because maybe you can relate and perhaps you will consider yours in the same light. Here you are … and hopefully, you are smiling too. We survived the swift current, rocky shores, and relentless winds. Some wounds are cloaked by time, other scars claim a place on our skin.  Despite it all, we are here, my friends. We are still here.

I’ve come to understand that life is a continuous journey of becoming. If we anchor ourselves to yesterday, we are bound to miss the beauty that lies before us. And there is so much beauty. Remarkable things transpire from this awareness and acceptance. But to begin we must let go. Let go of the fear of failure, the fear of rejection, the fear of the unknown. Fear claims too many dreams, and weary hearts make easy prey.

It’s in this light that I penned my first poem. I let go.

Writing is my saving grace. Through poetry and verse, I aspire to write stories that are universal in truth, and, hopefully, resonate in a way that is cathartic and soothing. I hope we can travel back with welcomed reflection, find solace and wisdom in the present, and feel inspired for the journey that lies before us.

In 2015, I stepped miles outside of my comfort zone and published my first book of poetry, The Heart’s Journey Home. Again, I let go. The Heart’s Journey Home is a collection of poems celebrating the fragility and resiliency of our hearts.

In July 2017, I published my second collection of poems, The Heart’s Lullaby. The Heart’s Lullaby is a candid portrayal of love in all its splendor and pain. I honoured my soul’s quest to delve deeper and explore/translate the intricate beauty that lies within our hearts. Again, I let go.

My journey has taught me that there really are no certainties in life. Every step is one of faith. A compilation of the trials we’ve overcome and the desire to carry on, and, in some cases, begin again. So, let’s embrace the journey, love deeply, and hold no burden of regret when night settles in.

Be bold, be brave, and just breathe … let’s release our fears into the custody of the wind.

And … let go.

to begin 10x10 purple etsy

With much joy and gratitude,



  1. Reblogged this on https://tinafrisco.com/2017/04/01/a-writers-story-natalie-ducey/ and said:

    When we weather the storms of life and continue on, undaunted and bearing our wounds like armor, we become wounded warriors, ready and able to cast our light into the world as a beacon of hope.

    Natalie Ducey is one such warrior. She acknowledged her fears and met the challenges life tossed at her feet, with grace and firm resolve. She is one of myriad unsung heroes in the world, as her story will enlighten and give hope to so many.

    1. Thank you so much, Tina! I have had so many lovely visitors and connected with some incredibly inspiring writers and authors because of your sharing. I’m so grateful for your support, compassion, and gracious spirit. (((Hugs))) to you. 🙂

  2. This is a remarkable story. My 9 year old nephew recently had an accident and the doctors thought he had fractured his C2 vertebrate. Most fortunately, due to his young age, his whole spine dislocated but there was no fracture. I thank God for this every day. I went totally cold when I heard the news two weeks ago. He is recovering slowly and has pain and numbness but he is okay.

    1. Thank you for sharing this, Robbie! I held my breath until the third sentence. Phew. Prayers for a full recovery. So lovely of you to stop by. It’s wonderful to connect with you. 🙂

  3. Heart wrenching life story, yet you have overcome so much and are now helping others with their pain. Bravo.

    My mother is ill and i worry about losing her. My dad has Patkinsons and who knows how many years I have left w him. Enjoy everyday w loved ones. Life is precious.

    Thanks for sharing

    1. Teri, it’s so lovely to meet you. I’m now following you on Twitter and via your blog as well. 🙂 I’ve met so many wonderful, inspiring people through Tina. I’m grateful you stopped by with such kind and encouraging words. Thank you. I pray your mom and dad enjoy a full life. Blessings to you and yours.

  4. Wow, I found your blog through the reblog on Tina’s site and I am so thankful you had the support of those around you when you began the journey healing from the car accident AND that writing has been such a great tool for you. Like you, I’ve turned to writing as a means to help heal emotional wounds. It’s a powerful way to express ourselves. Thank you for sharing your story.

    1. Christy, it’s so lovely to meet you. I found your blog as well, and I’m a proud new follower. On Twitter as well. 🙂 Thank you for your kind and encouraging words. It’s so very true…writing is such a powerful form of expression and ultimately freedom. Thank you once again. I have met so many incredibly supportive and amazingly talented people through Tina. I’m most grateful. 🙂

  5. Oh, wow, Natalie. I found this through a reblog John Fioravanti did of a reblog on Tina’s site. That’s a long way to reach this post, but it was well worth the journey. I had no idea you went through so much in your past. Knowing that makes you’re beautiful poetry even more inspiring.
    And bless your twin, Nicole, for waiting that extra year for you.
    I am so sorry about your mother passing at such a young age. I lost my father when he was 53 and I was 13. Devastating.
    You’ve had many hurdles in life, but your lovely spirit shines through despite all that adversity. I’m glad writing was such a salve for your soul. Not only did it help heal you, but your poems have touched many others in the process. {{{hugs}}}

    1. Mae, I’m so very grateful you found your way here. It was such a pleasant surprise to see the post by Tina and then the reblog by John. Thank you for your kind words, as I know they come from a tender and most gracious heart. (((Hugs))) to you as well.
      My sister has been my compass, beacon, and anchor. She lives on the East Coast with her husband, also a member of the Canadian Armed Forces. We didn’t plan it that way. Funny how things turn out. 🙂 We’re two very proud military spouses. Despite the distance, we see each other 4 or 5 times a year. When my husband retires in 2019, we’ll be making our way back East as well.
      Thank you again for your kind words, support, and friendship. I’m so grateful. 🙂

  6. This is a heartbreaking but inspiring story Natalie. Thanks for sharing it. When life throws challenges at a very young age, we learn to absorb the impact and emerge resilient, we also learn what a blessing being healthy is and appreciate the simple joys of life.
    I am glad I hopped over from Tina’s blog to connect with you. Stay blessed!

    1. Balroop, I’m so grateful for your visit and such kind and encouraging words. I’ve met so many inspiring, gracious souls through Tina. I’m a new proud follower of your blog and on Twitter as well. 🙂 I look forward to reading more of your beautiful poetry. Wishing you a lovely day!

  7. An inspiring post Natalie and I feel both your pain and your courage. After years of counselling others I too reached a point that whilst I loved seeing people achieve the freedom to let go and move on with their lives more positively I also realised that I needed to step back and help in another way. Through writing. I have scheduled a new on the shelves promotion for the collection on Tuesday and will put your book in the Cafe and Bookstore. I have everything I need from Amazon and your website.. Enjoy the rest of the weekend and thank you for all your support for the blog here and on social media. hugs Sally

  8. A beautifully penned story Natalie. I too have sailed the waters of despair. Having to deal with Cancer three times. The first time in 1983 my children were 4, 9 and 11. The last time was in 2011. I am 73 and still sailing toward shore. ☺☺

  9. That’s truly incredible, Patricia. Such an inspiration, indeed. I can feel the passion from your journey through your beautiful, heartfelt poetry. Blessings to you. 🙂

  10. An inspiring life story. It’s amazing that you were able to weather through so much pain and can still maintain hope and happiness. I’ve always feared that my life struggles have left me more bitter than philosophic.

  11. Natalie, you are a true inspiration to me and others! Your journey is heartbreaking but you persevered and now are stronger not only in body but in your beautiful spirit. I am honored to follow you and look forward to more of your inspiring words. Blessings & hugs, my friend! 😘 💜

    1. Janice, I’m sending out a huge (((hug))) for your kind, generous words. Thank you. The journey of our hearts are truly remarkable. A moment of reflection often inspires our steps forward.
      I’m so grateful for your visit and lovely comments. Thank you so much. Wishing you a beautiful weekend. XO

  12. Sometimes we have to suffer to learn how to love the precious life we have been given. I ruptured C5 in a car accident in 2007. I know how lucky I was that C6 was not totally severed. The surgery was successful, but I deal with auto-immune deficiency diseases that has robbed me of my mobility for 28 years. We learn to grow, evolve, and cherish life in spite of the challenges. I too am a poet, and I can’t wait to read your verse. Blessings to you. –Deborah

    1. Thank you for sharing this with me, Deborah. Yes, it’s so very true. We see/experience life differently when we choose to live a life of gratitude. Many blessings to you, as well. 🙂

  13. What a beautiful write up. I can’t thank you enough for sharing this with us. I have two daughters and I remind them that everyone is fighting a battle. Always keep that in the back of your mind, I tell them.

    Your battle was not fair but you took the challenge, you fought back, you wiggled your toes and some how you smiled. People are amazing. We somehow find a way to survive and you are a perfect example.

    Keep writing and continue to share your story. Every now and than we need to be reminded that there is good in the world. It’s not all bad.


    1. Thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words, Bryan. I really appreciate you stopping by, reading my story, and leaving such a lovely comment. Your words bring an instant smile. Thank you. Stay awesome! 🙂

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