"I feel like throwing up. Sweat and tears mingle on my cheek. 'This will pass,' I try to convince myself. 'This will pass.' I have been at the meditation centre for six days. I have four days left to go. I could get up and walk out the door right now. No one would stop me. But then nothing would change. And everything has to change."
Mary-Lou Stephens was lucky to make it into her forties. Therapy and AA helped her recover from her upbringing in an evangelical household; her habit of shoplifting through drama school; her addictions to food, drugs and alcohol; a string of failed love affairs and the break up of several bands. She has landed a dream job as a radio personality. Life is looking good. Except that Mary-Lou has a new boss, a psychopath in a suit.
Determined to avoid MORE therapy and desperate to cope with an increasingly toxic work environment, Mary-Lou signs up for a ten-day meditation retreat that requires total silence, endless hours of sitting cross-legged, and a food-as-fuel kind of diet. For a woman who talks for a living, is rarely still and cooks for comfort, this was never going to be an easy task.
Darkly funny and beautifully told, Sex, Drugs and Meditation is a tale for those of us who confuse being busy with being happy; the story of a woman who dared herself to stop talking and start living – and loving.
Mary-Lou was born and raised in Tasmania. She studied acting at The Victorian College of the Arts and played in bands in Melbourne and Sydney before she got a proper job – in radio. Mary-Lou kicked off her radio career at 2TM in Tamworth. She was lured away to help start up a brand new station in Townsville where she was the Breakfast co-host, Music Director, Assistant Program Director and very tired a lot of the time. Since joining the team at ABC Coast FM Mary-Lou has been the Music Director as well as presenting every shift ever invented including, Drive, Afternoons and Evenings. These days you'll find her on ABC Local Radio digital and online on Sunday Afternoons.