Sleeping Under the Bridge

sleeping under the bridge by Melissa Baker

I was stuck. I genuinely could not grasp the essence of living. In my 17 years on this earth, I had learned that truth did not exist. This tore me apart inside. For inside me existed a yearning for justice held by integrity, for hope held by compassion, and for purpose held by life itself. At this point, I really don’t think I have seen, heard, touched or experienced anything that was remotely truth; other than that angel appearing before me in the lane way. I know that was real but I couldn’t explain it.

-Melissa Baker, p165

Published by Atmosphere Press, USA, 2022. ISBN 978-1-63-988351-6

To the passer-by, Mel seemed like an ordinary teenager growing up in the middle-class suburban family in Sydney, Australia; but to those who wanted to get to know her, they could see she was hiding from the truth.

Mel had encountered more than most had experienced in a lifetime before she had reached 17. She yearned for freedom, yet what prevailed were threats, abuse and being trapped in an underworld of shame. With all her might, she tried not to give in to the loneliness that stalked her and the fear that plagued her, whilst sleeping under the bridge. Can she reveal her secrets before it’s too late?

This gripping brave true story speaks into adults from all walks of life from children that have gone through sexual, physical and emotional abuse and how that affected their internal rhythm. Nothing could hold Mel together other than her determination to search for the true meaning of life itself.

An intelligent, harrowing, and boldly confessional account of a survivor.

Kirkus Review

Available as a paperback, audio, and eBook at Amazon Kindle

For more details go to Dr Mel Baker books

A two-way street

First published in 2003. The print run was 1,000 copies and was sold out. The 2nd edition was published in 2018. No longer available.

Autobiography – Inspiration – Sydney, Australia. ISBN 978-1-36-40461-0

“Author demonstrates a tremendous amount of bravery in sharing stories of sexual assault and abuse. We can feel her approach, then a needed distancing from the memories, and the reader experiences that constant pull, and reminders of what it felt like to leave her body and go to a safe place while being molested. Author’s well-crafted step out of reality gives the reader lots to feel and a great depth of her character.

Dialogue itself is strong and engaging. There is some gorgeous phrasing and crushing honesty, such as ‘I used to feel alive. I used to feel’. The reader is clobbered by those simple lines and the strength it must have taken for the author to achieve that level of self-awareness and healing. The pace moves along well, chapters transitions are especially strong, and the author’s writing voice is clear, conversational, and just raw enough to cut us with those memories that required escape. Very brave. Author gives us lots to think about long after the book is done.”

– Judge, 27th Annual Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards

Published 2019 – art and story

Have you ever felt trapped or lived with that emotion? It’s like the very person you know within you melts away each day as hot sun liquefies a glacier. Time seems endless and yet still. Silenced to nothingness. Drifting in fragments. No control. Thoughts are stuck in my mind. I need to expel outwards. The fear alone stops me. Time may seem silenced, but the days go on and the years went on without me.

It was going to be the first day of the rest of my life. I stood tall and proud, strong and confident. I loved being there for people and helping them to be the best they can be. I pledged my life to serve my country, then it was all taken from me. It was strong powerful men that shut me down. This book is my tumultuous journey of working through the emotions, pain and struggle after dealing with abuse I received whilst serving as the only female chaplain in the Royal Australian Navy.

Mel’s honesty can at times be confronting. Yet it is her honesty that makes this book such a valuable resource. It is Mel’s desire that in sharing her experiences others may find comfort, courage and hope.”
– Peter Clarke, writer of the Foreword

Impressionistic and courageous, Mel has found the strength to document her journey from the darkest depths, to the life-saving highs of finding hope and healing. This is a painful, thoughtful and ultimately inspiring book that celebrates Mel’s ability to overcome great odds and challenges.”
– Nick Barkla, Australian Director and Actor

Available at your local Blurb as a 4-colour hard cover print:

Interactive eBook with short video of The Healing preview at Amazon Kindle