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Issue 16

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Röhm is Where the Heart Is Former Law & order actress elisabeth röhm is a woman's healthcare advocate, red Cross volunteer, writer and mom. By Rachel Sokol Elisabeth Röhm loves serenity and being home. The actress, mommy, and health- care advocate splits her time between New York and Los Angeles, but she knows how to channel her inner Dorothy Gale. "Home is an essential part of your life, it's important for me, and for my young daughter Easton, to have a peaceful en- viron ment at home, whether it's in Los Angeles or New York," she explains. "I love the security I have around me in New York, it is home. I can just hop on Amtrak or Metro North to escape." The native New Yorker calls the Empire State, 'the most beautiful' but has come to really enjoy the West Coast. "We are lucky we have that New York-slash-Los Angeles diversity in our lives," says Röhm, a Sarah Lawrence graduate with a degree in Writ- ing and European History. The cheerful, forward-thinking Röhm actually describes herself as "quiet to an extent." "I like being surrounded by my inspira- tional quotes and pictures and artwork. My refrigerator and walls are covered with my daughter's art," she says. "I am a big advocated for doing crafts and art projects together and we do them all the time." Röhm's favorite quote is: "When the going gets tough, do it anyway," from the poem, "Do It Anyway." "It's just a little gem I turn to," says the actress who starred as the spunky Assistant Attorney Serena Southerlyn on the popular NBC series Law & Order. "I turn to that poem as a reminder to not take things so personally." Currently filming a series of movies such as Sara's Cell and Blueglass Run, Röhm refers to her years on Law and Order as her "first big break." "It was filmed in my hometown, after all. I felt like I was recruited by the Yankees, it was my dream come true," she recalls excitedly. "It was also an intellectually stimulating show, which I liked. I also liked the consistent work of television." There is "no real method to the madness," laughs Röhm when asked about balancing work with being a mom. (Easton's father is Röhm's fiancé, Ron Wooster.) "I try to really focus on what's in front of me. And I worry a LOT less now than I did in my 20s. Instead of worrying about when, where, what if, I remind myself that every career has its demands," she explains. "My job may not be 9 to 5, but we can go away for a week or a month…I can play a part, then be with Easton for a solid month," she says, pointing out a differ - ence between television and film work. Motherhood, says Röhm, also taught her, "to be present, to be forgiving—and that it's OK to not be perfect." Röhm, a voracious reader, loves the literature of DH Lawrence and Pat Conroy—to name just a few. "As a child, I fell in love with books and Easton loves books too. I read her books by Brian Andreas—he writes children's books with adult themes." One of Röhm's other gems is the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, a book she has turned to since the loss of her mother, two years ago. "I thought it was going to be a bunch of spiritual mumbo jumbo, but it's absolutely not." Röhm, an only child, beautifully describes her mother as someone who, "just loved me with every drop she had—she was always so incredibly patient with me," recalls Röhm, whose mother passed away from a heart attack at age 60. "Sadly, my daughter will never know my mom in body, but she will know her in spirit. She had a huge heart." Continued Next Page 34 A Distinctive style . com

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