We hear from two women who didn't follow the script life had written for them. Today Jeanette Winterson is a famous British writer. We find out what happened when as a teenager, she had to tell her strict Pentecostal parents she had fallen in love with a girl. Also, Rebecca Hass explains why as a limelight-loving mezzo soprano, she has decided to flee to the Mojave desert for some alone time.
Jeanette Winterson grew up in a small industrial town just outside Manchester, England. She was adopted by very religious Pentecostal parents who had very religious plans for their girl. She would be a missionary. Slight change: At 16, Winterson fell in love with another girl.
Her mother wasn't happy and subjected her to a three-day exorcism that Winterson says "did not break her spirit". She was told she would have to give up her love or move out of the family home. As Winterson turned to leave, her mother asked her, "Why be happy when you could be normal?"
That has become the title of this award-winning author's new memoir. Mary talks to Winterson about how the wounds of those early traumas have not healed and that, in fact, has become the blessing.
After that, we travel to the Mojave Desert with Rebecca Hass, a Canadian mezzo-soprano. Hass has a full career in addition to being a mom and partner. What could possibly be missing from her life? Something very precious - free time. She felt like she was losing herself.
Hass decided to go on a vision quest to examine her life and, scariest of all, decide what parts she may want to leave behind. She was alone in the desert for two days with no food and only a tarp for shelter. Hass also took along her recording gear. She shares her audio journals and explains why she wanted to do this and whether it was worth it.