Natalie Knox is the author of ‘The Mending Chronicles of Liam and Emily’ and ‘The Parents’ Guide to The Mending Chronicles of Liam and Emily’.
What do you love about divorce recovery counselling?
I have found it very special to step into a child’s life for a short while and redirect them from the path that life is leading them down. That path usually requires them to carry baggage from their experience of divorce and is often laced with non-truths about who they are. I, Natalie Knox, try and point them along a different path where there is knowledge, empowerment and signposts directing them to the light.
Do you come from a divorced home?
No, I don’t, my parents have been married for over 45 years now. All my divorce recovery knowledge comes from counselling little people who have experienced a divorce. I have also been married to my wonderful hubby for over 20 years and we have three children.
Why do you use Bible verses in The Mending Chronicles of Liam and Emily?
I find spirituality is a great friend on the divorce recovery journey. Bible verses have wonderful truths in them and I feel that people who are spiritually inclined have the potential to find the gems they hold. I am a Christian so I have a deep love and admiration for what the Bible offers: comfort, advice, insight, hope and light.
How long have you been a Christian?
I, Natalie Knox, was raised in a Christian home so faith has always been a part of my life.
Why is emotional intelligence important to you?
I have seen how emotional intelligence has empowered children in times of crisis. When a child can communicate how they feel and use very specific words to describe their experience, you can really reach them and help them. It gives them a great platform with which to progress on their journey of recovery. Troublesome behaviours often disappear because they are expressing themselves effectively and getting the help they need. I’ve seen withdrawn kids speak up about what’s bothering them and kids who usually throw tantrums have meaningful conversations. Relationships become easier too as they can read others a lot better and have the confidence to communicate with the people in their lives.
As a teacher, you taught 9-12-year-olds. What do you love about that age?
I find that age group the most enjoyable as I find they are at the ‘oldest’ part of childhood before puberty kicks in. They are extremely curious and have the capacity to really engage in conversation and exploration of topics that interest them. Generally, they haven’t quite reached that self-aware phase yet, their thirst for knowledge is often the loudest voice in their head. They’re still playful and happy to join in with games and a bit of fun.
Who are Liam and Emily?
They are fictitious characters based on all the children I have done divorce recovery with. I crafted the challenges they face and their responses around the reoccurring things I encountered in the counselling room. Emily represents the younger children and Liam the older ones. I hope that all the readers find something in Liam and Emily that they can relate to.
Why did you specialise in divorce recovery?
I find that because divorce is so common people don’t think it has such a big impact on kids. When I have spoken to adults whose parents got divorced and hear them talk about the hard work they have had to do to overcome the issues related to that time in their lives, I realise how valuable divorce recovery is for children. Divorce is common and so I feel there is a big need. I also find that many Christians feel alone as there tends to be a stigma around divorce within Christian communities. My wish is to make divorce recovery as accessible to everyone as possible and minimise the effects it potentially has on lives.
What do you like to read?
I, Natalie Knox, enjoy novels very much. My preference is usually historical fiction and overcoming adversity books, but I generally just love a good story. I belong to a book club so read a wide variety of books. We have a good chat, which is great fun as we are all book lovers. I enjoy reading spiritual and self-care books from time to time and my favourite authors at the moment are Richard Rohr and Brené Brown. Children’s poetry is something rather special to me too. Some of my happiest memories in the classroom have been sharing a crazy poem with the kids and having a chuckle together.
What do you do in your spare time?
If I have spare time I will probably read, bake, or go for a walk. I love my camera so a special treat is to take my camera with on walks and capture whatever beauty I find along the way. I enjoy watching TV too, although I am quite particular about what I like to watch. Reality sewing, renovation or baking shows, historical dramas with all the gorgeous settings and costumes or a good ‘whodunnit’ suit me fine.
What does being a mother add to your writing?
I agree with the phrase that says ‘when you become a mother you grow another heart’. I think a writer potentially draws from an inner well like this ‘extra heart’ and puts words to the life that flows out from that place.
Any other projects you are working on?
Yes, a new book project. Wish me luck!