About JJ

Check out JJ’s comedy at jjbarrows.com

“Jennie Joy,” they said when I popped out into the world, naked as they come, and naked I came except for a head full of hair so thick they called me “the Russian.”

No joke, the Russian…


So there I was, hairy as could be and trying to figure out how to fit into this world along side all of my bald baby friends so delicately covered in peach fuzz.

And thirty-some years later, so goes the rest of my story of trying to figure out how to fit into a world that I wasn’t made for.

I’m still pretty hairy and rough around the edges, but I smell like egyptian musk and blackberry sage when I take the time to clean up. I’m in recovery from being a middle child, a preacher’s kid, a co-dependent, a people-pleaser, being mis-understood when I said no the first time, being broken-hearted one too many times, an aggressive eating disorder, an adult child of a dysfunctional family, divorced parents and severe depression…

And yet, life goes on. While I am by no-means perfect, equipped with all the answers for how to conquer and overcome, I am very much at peace with imperfection, and a little more skilled at navigating the inevitable darker seasons of life.

It is well with my soul… even when it’s not.

And so the story goes, giving up the story I used to tell, that every thing was fine, when in reality everything was not; claiming the truth, ugly as it may be; and learning how to live well without excusing myself to settle for anything less than a full life.

I cry hard and laugh often. I love to dance, second only to writing and third only to surfing… the ocean is my medicine and where I most experience God.

I think the best romance is made up of chocolate and peanut butter, and the best love story belongs to Johnny and June Carter Cash. My mom doesn’t know I have four tattoos and this is my way of telling her. I’ve gone from barista to flight attendant to dog walker to preschool chef to now pursuing that which I love most in life, writing, comedy and art.

Thus continues life in my thirties. With a lot of baggage and a long road ahead, I’ve shaken off all the unnecessaries, packed light for the rest of the journey and expressed my desires while surrendering my plans with (sometimes hesitantly) open arms to the God I believe in. I’ve never been more terrified and more excited in all my life.

I’m showing up for life, again, a little late, but better late than never.

Thanks for joining me on this raw and real journey. It’s called a spade, and it ain’t always pretty, but real life beats all.

Much Muchness,

Jennie Joy (jj to most, jennie to a few,  and “hey lady” to the other dog walkers when I don’t pick up after the dog)

You can also find me over at jjbarrows.com


12 thoughts on “About JJ”

  1. Love you JJ! So glad you’re on a good path again! I can’t wait to read more about your life’s journey! You are amazing!


  2. I guess I am one of the ones that knew you as Jennie. But I can be converted to JJ. You spent a few weeks with me and my family in the summer of 2005, I think. Maria lived with us and you visited Maria. I’m enjoying this. Real stuff. I like me some real. Blessings!


  3. JJ, your gifting is profound. God is using every painful moment of your life redemtively through every word you write and speak. I’m in for the journey with you. H


  4. JJ, just found you in the usual way kindred souls do these days (randomly, on YouTube). Thanks for sharing, being so vulnerable. You make me laugh and feel not so alone. I hope and pray you find the fulfillment you deserve. Sincerely, ~Paul in Washington (state) P.S. I was born in La Jolla : )


  5. Hey Jenny,
    You’re probably not going to remember the name Steve and Phyllis Dickey, but we once worshiped at Pawleys Island and knew your parents, Bob and Lydia. In fact, we were at the hospital the day you were born! We’re in Pawleys this week on vacation, drove by the church, and for some reason I Googled ” Barrows” and your name popped up. We’re thrilled to see and hear ( love your comedy) how life has/is worked/working out for you. Keep enjoying the ride! Steve and Phyllis Dickey


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