Shannie Alvarez is an inspirational writer and nurse. She is currently working on a general medicine unit helping people who struggle with mental illness, disease, and addictions. Her message of learning how to love yourself is reflected through Biblical principles and her faith in God. She enjoys thought-provoking, creativity as she expresses much of her writings through poetry.
1. What inspired you to write We Are One?
I am someone who thinks a lot about who we are and why we are we here. My journey has mostly been influenced by Christianity and Judaism, but I am open-minded as I believe the truth of God is found in all things. Ultimately, I believe that God is love; therefore, I desire to express what I understand about God by encouraging people to not lose hope in the goodness in this world.
2. What do you hope readers will get from reading your book?
I encourage others to seek and find. Coming from a place of darkness myself, I understand how difficult it is to see the light when you simply cannot find the light-switch. I want to give hope to people to not give up, but understand that there is more to who we are as individuals and as a whole. If we understand ourselves, we can also understand what our relationship is to one another.
3. How does your work as a nurse influence the story?
I identify well with people who are in a struggle because I have had my own struggles in life. Depression haunted me, but I understand the strength and wisdom one can learn when they overcome challenges. Depression pushed me to want to know what happiness feels like. My desire to know what is good triggered a journey I did not expect, which helped me to understand how to love myself. The struggle is real and, for me, I like to be part of peoples’ journeys because that is what is real — I like to encourage people through tough times in life.
4. When did you first have a leap of faith?
My journey started 25 years ago when I felt completely consumed by the pressures of life. In my confusion of not understanding myself or my purpose, I was suicidal and nearly died. I desired to find what was good, but I didn’t know what to trust. I had been deceived by so many things in my life and I didn’t know how to find something I could believe in. Understanding God does not happen overnight — learning who God is will take you on a journey to learn who you are.