Daily Archives: May 4, 2022
Audley Enough: A Portrait of Triumph and Recovery in the Face of Mania and Depression
by Lesley Whyte Reford & Patricia Lavoie
GENRE: Non-fiction, Biography/Memoir
Audley Enough follows Audley’s journey through “The Matrix,” specifically his mental health. The book describes his adventures into his mania and depression that occurred during the peak employment years of his life, from 27 to 38 years old. It takes one through the spiritual essence of his being, and gives one steps to travel through mania and depression. After reading his book, one comes out stronger with multiple coping tools. The book is about Audley refusing to let his bipolar diagnosis define him, nor stop him from leading a mentally, healthy, and productive life.
Aside from giving him the personal physical and spiritual release from racism, dance also exposed him to a more “uncoloured” world. Through the arts, he became more accepted in the white world. Audley says he didn’t have to pretend anymore. Despite now being seen as a black—and questioned as perhaps gay to some—person, he felt he was nevertheless being accepted as a human being. Audley says he felt that the arts trumped the racism. He started street dancing and threw himself into training in jazz and ballet. He tried out for a street dance group and was accepted, and soon began to do the circuits at colleges and other local venues. Through his training, he met fellow ballet dancers, mostly girls from good families and hence he began living the life of a white person. Many people called him “Oreo Cookie” because he was black on the outside but white on the inside. His world was opening up to things he never would have seen without dance. He met all kinds of new people who admired him for his talent and ignored his colour. They started taking him places, introducing him to people, and taking him to cultural shows. With his interest in dance and his personal confidence growing, in 1978 Audley enrolled in the highly reputable Roland and Romaine School of Dance in Toronto where he studied for two years. In 1979, he won the “Most Promising Dancer Award” at the school. People started recommending him for work in the field of dance. Roland himself said he was an outstanding talent and inspiration to all.” It was a stage in his life when he was truly happy. He says when he was on the dance floor, “that’s when I lost that whole racism thing.” Audley had found his calling, despite the never-ending and ever-expanding stereotypical labels trailing along with him.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Audley Coley is a mental health coach, a philanthropist, the subject of a book and a Friend of the Bell Let’s Talk campaign. He is often called upon to host forums on mental health awareness and was more recently seen on CBC’s You Can’t Ask That describing his life with bipolar disorder and on Facebook, hosting the live broadcast to the Alianait Arts Festival for the Nunavut community alongside his lovely daughter.
His ability to soar above mental illness is something he credits to many things. His support system: a strong Jamaican, God-fearing, and closely knit family, first. Sports and physical activity come in at a close second. Audley has always been extremely active. He played hockey, soccer and was a dancer/choreographer, most of his life. At the fine age of 62, he can be found at the Atwater Club teaching a class that could put people half his age to shame. Just ask his Yummy Mummies who subscribe to his workouts and carefully crafted playlist. And then, it’s about food for Audley. He perfected his culinary skills working as a chef in Frobisher Bay (Iqaluit) and today, cooking is truly his labour of love. He takes his vitamins (his medication) regularly and frequently visits to Up House, a place where he goes to get centered and to give back to those who once gave to him. The last and perhaps most important box he checks off on his self-care list is REST.
Audley’s objective is to tell his story often so people may recognize themselves, to provide hope for families of those affected, to share a recipe for success that he knows works and to have the opportunity to change someone’s life in the same way that Patty Duke’s openness changed his.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
LESLEY WHYTE REFORD is a seasoned writer who has a passion for communications and storytelling. She obtained her Master’s degree in Public Administration (MPA) from Queen’s University in 1993 and went on to build her career in Corporate Communications and Public Relations in the public, private, and non-profit sectors. As she raised her two sons, Lesley put her career on hold but continued with her writing when time allowed. Engaging in small contract freelance opportunities and volunteer work, Lesley published a centennial book commemorating the Montreal Children’s Hospital’s contribution to the Montreal community titled “100 Years of Stories” in 2004. In 2013, she collaborated with Audley Coley to author “Audley Enough”, an inspiring resource to share his journey with bipolar disorder and help combat the stigma of mental health issues. Lesley is currently a full-time grant writer at One Tree Planted, Inc., a global reforestation non-profit organization.
PATRICIA LAVOIE has been writing and producing feature films and television series for many years including seventeen seasons with Sesame Street (CBC) in Canada where she honed her pre-school expertise. She developed the original concept for and produced the first Heritage Minutes, a multi-million dollar television and cinema project based on anecdotes of Canadian history, as well as many award-winning preschool and family productions for broadcasters such as CBC, Radio-Canada, YTV, Treehouse, Animal Planet, TVOntario, TFO, Télé-Québec, Discovery Channel USA and PBS.
Ms. Lavoie also co-produced several feature length films with international partners in Australia, New Zealand, France, Japan and the USA. Her online game productions were created for PBS, National Geographic, CBC, Radio-Canada and Treehouse.
As a broadcaster, Ms. Lavoie also served as interim Director of Yoopa, a multiplatform brand comprised of a television channel, an online community for children and parents and a magazine for parents.
Audley Enough is her third book.
CONNECT WITH AUDLEY COLEY
WEBSITE – Audley Coley (audleyenoughbook.com)
FACEBOOK – Audley Coley | Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/Audley-Coley-105730245370234
INSTAGRAM – Audley Coley (@audleycoley) • Instagram photos and videos : https://www.instagram.com/audleycoley
TWITTER – Audley Coley (@audley_coley) / Twitter : https://twitter.com/audley_coley
GOODREADS – Audley Coley (audleycoley) – Montreal, QC, Canada (15 books) | Goodreads : https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/147728134-audley-coley
LINKEDIN – Audley Coley – Motivational and Keynote Speaker on Mental Health & Wellness – Audley Coley | LinkedIn : https://www.linkedin.com/in/audleycoley/
PURCHASE LINKS AUDLEY ENOUGH
AMAZON.COM – https://amazon.com/dp/022887128X
AMAZON.CA – https://amazon.com/dp/022887128X
AMAZON KINDLE – https://amazon.com/dp/B09PGRX8PW
Lesley Whyte Reford & Patricia Lavoie will be awarding a $15 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.