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Q&A with Chloe Taylor Brown

Q&A with Chloe Taylor Brown
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Here is a true story of Sisterhood. Karen Moyer & Chloe Taylor Brown recently met through Sisters in Sports. Karen, an MLB Sis, and Chloe, an NBA Sis, they instantly found so many ways to relate! Since that time, they have become good friends and provided great inspiration to each other’s work. A couple of weeks ago, Karen had a conversation with our Sister Chloe about her life, family, Sis story, newly published memoir and overall incredible life journey. Read on, there is truly a lot to learn from this remarkable woman!

Karen: We are so honored to be talking to you today. We are so excited for you to be the first sister that we are highlighting on our new website. It is such an honor!

Chloe: You have no idea how blessed I feel in my life right now, especially with this conversation. Karen you really have a big part in that. I have to thank you for endorsing the back of my book. Which means that you love the book!

Karen: But I love everything about you! Your honesty and integrity, and then to be able to share that your empowering others that will go through what you have. And you continue to find the silver lining in it all. You are going to be a huge part of Sis and I can’t wait for 2016. And I am excited for all for the amazing things we can do together!

Chloe: You know what I call that, a triple hot win. We are all win, win, win. And we are all moving forward, and doing it all naturally, and authentically.

Karen: Let’s tell our Sisters a bit more about you. How did you and your husband Rick meet? Tell us a little about your family.

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Chloe: Rick and I met in college at Mississippi State University. We are the same age, and the first time I heard of Rick was when I went to summer school before our Freshman year. A girl who I became very fond of was from his hometown and kept talking about her homeboy that was coming to our college in the fall. Rick and I became really good friends, and for some reason he wasn’t my type at that time. We were friends during freshman, sophomore and junior year, and then finally our Senior year we just kinda hit it off and started dating. In the first two months of dating we knew that we were going to get married. Rick even said we were going to get married in two years. I guess because we knew each other. And we just kinda knew.

Karen: What were the next parts of your journey?

Chloe: Well, when I entered into college, my first dream of doing anything was to be a model. I had the body type for it and I had the desire. So I majored in Fashion in college and I traveled around with my fashion board. I did some local modeling in college. And I just held on to that dream. My intentions were to go to New York to be a model after college, but Rick got drafted to the Golden State Warriors, and when I went out to visit with him, I realized that you could be a model in San Francisco! So, of course I rigged it so I could go out there, and that’s how it started. I started my modeling career in San Francisco. I thought that I was really sophisticated in Mississippi, but I got to San Francisco and I realized that wasn’t the sophistication I needed. I went through a little transition, it was a big change, and I got a little bit depressed. And it’s kind of what I do now to make people realize who they really are. My first agent did that for me and really taught me how to change my sophistication, really strut the runway, and how to transition from a Mississippi girl to a San Francisco model. And I would say after about six months of being a model we got married. Exactly two years from when we said we were going to get married!

Six months after that, my agent in San Francisco introduced me to an Italian agency, and I was accepted and went to Italy. And after being there for two long months, Rick called and told me he was traded to the Atlanta Hawks. So when I came back we went to New York, and then came to Atlanta, that’s how we got here. Then after five years in the NBA, I was still back and forth to Europe, and his agent offered him a position in a city in Europe that was about an hour from Milan. We just thought it was so ideal, we thought we could spend more time together, and I didn’t have to have a rendezvous with him in New York from Milan. I never thought that we would spent ten years there, so we took that opportunity but he ended up going in between, back and forth between Italy and Spain and then we had our three children. It was just a beautiful life and it worked out exactly like we had planned. And being young adults we were really living our dream life at that time.

Karen: What are the names and ages of your children?

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Chloe: Jade is 29, my first and only daughter and I use to love travelling around Italy with her. We were living in Milan at the time, and I needed to travel to Germany for a modeling shoot that Saturday working for Escada. I got a call that day that my nanny at the time had to cancel on me last minute. It really was a scary experience not knowing what I was going to do with her as I was walking down the runway, and I didn’t know what to do. Of course it worked out and I took her to the shoot with me and it really all worked out!

Jade is 29, my first and only daughter and I use to love traveling around Italy with her. We were living in Milan at the time, and I needed to travel to Germany for a modeling shoot that Saturday working for Escada. I got a call that day that my nanny at the time had to cancel on me last minute. It really was a scary experience not knowing what I was going to do with her as I was walking down the runway, and I didn’t know what to do. Of course it worked out and I took her to the shoot with me and it really all worked out!

Okay so then it was time to think about having our next child and then came Taylor. Taylor is 26 and just got to Tel Aviv this morning to play Basketball. When he was a baby, I didn’t know how to still be an international model with two children. We then moved back to San Francisco with our two kids. So I kind of gave up the whole idea of being an international model and started working locally shortly after our third child was born.

Justin (Is our angel in heaven) (he would be 23 in October) in the book I wrote that he is the cornerstone of my book. He fell in our pool right before his fourth birthday. He truly does watch over all of us.

Joshua is my baby, and he16. He is just such a wonderful child. His spirit reminds me of his dad’s, he is really easy going. He is really spoiled, we needed a place to put all of those hugs and kisses after not having Justin, and Josh allowed us to do that. He is a sweet person, my older children tell me that we let him get away with too much.

Karen: Something tells me that he will end up just fine in life. Birth order is so important. I think we forget that a lot of who we are and who we are. Honestly studies say that that it really shapes who we really are, more so than our parents do for us.

Karen: You are a woman constantly on the go between your family, your business, and your new book, modeling career. How do you make this all work and balance it all?

Chloe: In going through the whole process, well I’ve always been a strong willed person. I’ve always wanted to go for what I have wanted to go for. But when Justin died I have what I call a paradigm crash. A paradigm is our model of how we set our life up, and how we envision our life to be. Rick and I had done a great job of creating our dream life, and when Justin died, we didn’t know anything anymore really, and our decisions didn’t add up. Years afterward, it helped me to get a coach to get my life back together. I had therapy and counseling, and that got me to average status quo. And then I needed to be coached back up. What the coach did was to teach me, and show me to connect my life dots. It really came from my desire to share my knowledge, and to help other people. My business kind of evolved into what it is now because my coach told me I was really dynamic, and I was really good at helping people see what they really wanted. And so I finally saw what I wanted from my life again. I was able to put my family, business, and community, and I created a pyramid I call my big life game. No matter what I am doing, I am always playing my big life game. It all gets me up to my big life game, and that sharing my knowledge with people. If I spend a lot of time writing my book and working on my business, or with my family, I don’t worry about it because I know I’m going to finish it one day and it going to help me to play my game even bigger. I call it flow; I am in flow with who I really am.

Karen: What advice do you give these women that are trying to find their own purpose?

Chloe: Having lived in that whole arena of professional sports, and being connected with other women in sports, I saw a lot of women let their dreams go, and they put themselves on the back burner. They would always talk about what they couldn’t do instead of what they could. I remember hearing these women during a conversation tell me “Wow I can’t believe your husband lets you do that!” No he isn’t letting me, we are in agreement. I am going to do this based on who I am as a woman.

First of all, I would have an assessment, called a Personal Excellence Profile (PEP), and it shows anyone how they are showing up in life based on the way they think, based on them seeing how their thinking is creating their life.

They get to transform their own thinking. This profile will show them where they are, and how to elevate themselves in other levels. And to take it to the next level, I help them create their own mantras to help create their authentic life game. Just the same way I had to do for myself, and how my coach helped me, and that’s what I do with my clients. I also wrote a curriculum and workbook called the “Girl Swag”, and it’s a step by step process to do in a group or alone. I would tell our Sisters to draw out their own authenticity, and think of it as leaving a legacy. A lot of women don’t want to take away from their husbands, children, and family, but we need to get them to understand about what they want to leave as a legacy. What kind of legacy do you want to leave based on who you are genuinely and your authentic self?

Karen: I think we are cut from the same cloth!

Karen: A lot of women marry at a young age and I think it’s important that we empower them and show them that they deserve “purpose”. Can you share a way to do that?

Chloe: I have to go back to the Personal Excellence Profile, and that profile separates a person into 12 vital abilities. It starts with your value of yourself, and if don’t value yourself then everything you do will always be for someone else. It’s not an honorable thing to neglect yourself, and the Personal Excellence Profile will help them to draw out even more of their own purpose. It will show them that it is good to be your best self, and to make a contribution to yourself first. It is good to have things that are just for you. We’ve got to get these women to see that they can also have big dreams and goals. I am really good at discovering that for people.

Karen: Tell is about the journey of writing your new memoir, “I Can Laugh Again: From the Valley of Grief to a Glimpse of Heaven”.

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Chloe: In Sept 2016 it will be 20 years since Justin died. A year after Justin died, I heard God tell me to write. On a separate note, when an athlete retires, it’s almost as if your coping with a death as well. I saw Rick not knowing who he was anymore, and I was asking God how I could help my husband. I was really asking God how could I help make money to help my husband? God told me that it wasn’t going to come from Rick this next time, but I clearly heard from him that my writing was going to be the ticket. This was the first book I started to write. I had a literary agent, and he asked me “How did you get through this?” I wasn’t through it and I said I don’t know. He said I think you need to write a few pages, because I think it’s something you need to know. I wasn’t ready to write about it because it was so painful. When I was pregnant with Joshua I felt like I was ready to write it, and I actually finished it. I would keep picking it up to read it, but it hurt so bad to read my own writing so I would keep picking it up and putting it down. My friend Karl helped me to see that this book was for everyone going through grief. He really supported me. Last October, one of my good friends from college helped me go through the book piece-by-piece, chapter-by-chapter with great patience; this was the only reason it is published now. It was the only way that I could do it. It took me 18 years, can you believe it!! For the first time I was able to read it as an objective woman, and I know that this book is really going to help so many people!

(You can purchase aany of Chloe’s books, including her new memoir here.)

Karen: I think timing is everything. You are such a strong women, and you are an even stronger version of yourself now. Your book is going to have a huge impact!! I am so excited to be apart of your journey! Thank you for sharing and being you and for being so centered.

Karen: Any advice you would give our Sisters on retirement with a professional athlete?

Chloe: Rick retired in 1995, 20 years ago this month. When he came home from Spain, I didn’t know he was coming home to stay. He never communicated that. I have to draw things out of him, and that is frustrating. We are the opposite, and it has been a great challenge. I didn’t understand when athletes and their wives would get divorced after retirement. Before I was going through his retirement, I met this flight attendant that was once married to an athlete. She told me that when she married “it was said ‘until death do us part’, and he died when he retired, so we got divorced”. I was shocked to hear that. But now with so many friends and their husbands being retired, if couples don’t have friendship, love, respect, and support, I can see this happening. My husband lost something when he retired that he has not been able to get back. I have worked very hard to keep my marriage together, and I believe because we can always go back to the fact that we were friends before, we are able to make it work. It is very challenging, and you have to work really hard. I believe that if Rick were to read “I Can Laugh Again” it would really help him. He told me just today that he was going to order his own copy from Amazon.com. My older children have not read the book either. They have told me that they are going to read it, but they are afraid. I know for certain that it is really going to help my kids.

Karen: The balance of it all is so remarkable.  I’m in awe over it all.

Chloe: I feel liberated now that my most intimate secrets are out about that particular situation. Now that I have been authentic and even more truthful, I feel like I can be even more of all of that. It’s allowing me to tell my story, you can’t always tell by looking at someone what they are going through. I’ve been accused of being an idealist. People think that I have no problems, and issues, and this book will help me to show people that I too am human.

Karen: Tell me what Sisters in Sports and the Sisterhood means to you and our mission, these friendships we create, and support that we create for everyone. Why is this is so important?

Chloe: I want to start with my personal story. I felt so alone, I really did, when Rick first retired, I had such a short span before Justin died. A lot of people we loved started to leave our lives one by one. We couldn’t figure it out if it was because Rick wasn’t an athlete anymore, or because Justin died and they didn’t know what to say. We just didn’t know what happened. It was really lonely. For my own reasons, just as I met you, I am feeling like my life force energy is coming back to be with like minded women that have gone through similar things. We are all in this spiral downward, and for those who don’t know who they are individually it can be really tough. And so for me not understanding what was going on in my life, it was really lonely. I finally found a sisterhood I longed for and craved. Sisters in Sports has done that for me. To read their stories, and share information on Facebook is a game changer. It is so important for us to take care of ourselves, and I believe with all of the different platforms of Sis we are going to be able to find that we can hold each other accountable, and have someone to lean on. It’s going to be a game changer, we are going to be there for each other, and I feel so good about that!

Karen: Do you have any favorite Sisterhood friendship memories?

Chloe: I can’t wait to tell my friends about this. I have two women who’s husbands were in the NBA. Bobby Joe and Collette have been there for me the whole time. Collete and I are so excited because we can be so honest with either other. They have been there for me for everything, and we’ve had the time of our lives. Collete had just left our house the summer that Justin died, and she turned right back around and told her job she couldn’t come back and she came and stayed with us to support us through it all. She looks to Rick as a brother. I can’t ask for a better friend.

I feel so blessed to have talked with you today Karen, and I am sure everyone you meet feels the same way!

Karen: Thank you, love you Chloe!

 

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