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Who are you, really?

“You are what you are when nobody is looking.” ~Abigail Van Buren

Today’s quote is all about authenticity — a common theme in many “Dear Abby” columns. It’s human nature to present our best image in public, but being truly authentic requires honest self-reflection and courage. That’s not so easy, especially today. Just for starters, consider all the edited selfies and photos of stage-managed lifestyles that constantly bombard us on social media platforms. Once in a while, it’s worth doing a reality check. Who are we when nobody’s looking? ~CL

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Photo: Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, by Cindy La Ferle

Throughout my career, I've worked as a book production editor, travel magazine editor, features writer, and weekly newspaper columnist. My award-winning lifestyles features and essays have appeared in many national magazines and anthologies, including Newsweek, Reader's Digest, The Christian Science Monitor, Writer's Digest, Victoria, Better Homes & Gardens, Bella Grace, and more. My weekly Sunday "Life Lines" column ran for 14 years in The Daily Tribune (Royal Oak, MI) and won a First Place (Local Columns) award from the Michigan Press Association. My essay collection, Writing Home, includes 93 previously published columns and essays focusing on parenthood and family life.

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