Jasmine and her loyal companion, Fiji, have traveled over 16,000 miles together — mostly via a non-motorized bicycle.
Fiji, a cancer survivor and rehabilitated shelter dog with former behavioral issues, rescued Jasmine from the throes of Major Depression back in 2011. Jasmine was reclusive, gaining a lot of weight, failing in school, and quietly imploding from the loss of will and self-worth. She had no idea what the underlying cause of these feelings stemmed from; she was lost.
In 2013, Fiji and a bicycle changed the course of Jasmine’s life and lifted her out of the darkness. Together, without any long distance cycling, camping, and travel experience, they set out on the adventure of a lifetime, pedaling across the United States of America. Jasmine, a 200-pound plus woman, proved to herself and others that barriers are often constructed within our minds, and it takes community and connection with others to break them down. We do not have to fight our battles in isolation and loneliness.
On that adventure, Jasmine experienced random acts of kindness, learned about the world, and with restored faith in humanity, gained the courage to pursue her dreams and love herself.
Now, with over 16,000 miles cycling in many states and across Canada, and finally understanding that her struggle was, in fact, Major Depression, Jasmine shares her positive message about facing your fears, loving yourself, and connecting with the world around you to others.
“You have to live your life completely opposite of how depression would have you be.”
“I used to be sad with moments of happiness. Now, I am happy with moments of sadness.”
She speaks for numerous venues including schools, youth and community centers, clubs, house concerts, etc….
She enthusiastically shares stories from her travels, often causing listeners to laugh, gasp, and reflect. She loves to engage and interact with the audience, and challenge them to leave their comfort zones.
The overall theme or message of her talk subject is empowerment and happiness. She usually brings Fiji and her tricycle to the event and encourages any music students and musicians to bring their instruments to the events for a musical collaboration.
Currently, the funds from Jasmine’s speaking engagements go towards one of her main focuses — motivating underserved communities to start music programs and constructing her own community music school. In collaboration with Fiddlershop, Jasmine tries to gain donors to provide discounted instruments to students, wanting to learn to play the violin, viola, or cello but lacking the financial resources. Jasmine tries to bring music teachers and these young ones together to help with affordable or even free lessons.
Contact Jasmine via email — firstname.lastname@example.org — for information on speaking at your school, shop, club, non-profit, or other venues. Depending on the event and building rules, Fiji may come along!
Thank you for your support!