Stories that Matter

Struggles

Still…Life

In the aftermath of the celebrations, all is quiet. Still. Things are tidied, relatively speaking, and I’m heading into the new year filled with anticipation. Yet, there is a restlessness within, something I can’t quite comprehend. Something perhaps I need to do, to say, to put aside. But my thoughts still scream loud. Still. I’m…
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Hidden In The Heart, A Love Story

I’m just back from Nicaragua, which I’ll tell you all about at a later date. But while I was away, my second novel re-released, so I thought I’d share that excitement with you today! Hidden in the Heart is loosely based on my own search and reunion journey, and it means a lot to me, so I’m…
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What Do We Do Then, With The Broken?

We’re officially in holiday season. Tomorrow, my friends and family in the US will celebrate Thanksgiving. And then the Christmas decorations come out, the tree goes up and before we know it we’re singing Jingle Bells. Silent Night. O Come All Ye Faithful. But there are those around us who do not want to sing…
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Here We Go Again…

“How are you?” Lately, when I’m asked this question, I want to roll my eyes and mutter, how much time do you have? I think if I really answered the question honestly, they’d never ask again. But I slap on a smile and say, “Just fine, how are you?” Because that’s how you answer that question.…
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What Am I Afraid Of?

January 29, 2018 | 2 Comments

Words fail me. Lately. When I try to sum up what this thing is that I do and why I do it and why I can’t not do it and why some days the words won’t come . . .  words fail me. And the question rattles hard in my head. Is it . .…

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Is It Supposed To Hurt This Much?

June 8, 2017 | 7 Comments

That was a text I got from my daughter a few hours into labour. “Is it supposed to hurt this much?” I wanted to laugh, but I didn’t. Because, yes. It is. And it does. And it will continue to. With every challenge that comes with being a parent. Being a mother or father or…

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Being The Grown-Up In The Room

February 13, 2017 | 8 Comments

I read this excellent post on Jen Hatmaker’s Facbook page yesterday. She talked about looking for the grown-up in the room, i.e. the person not arguing, not using childish banter to go on the attack, the person others look to because they’re talking sense. Sometimes you have to be that person. Sometimes you have to…

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Get Back Up ~ Dedicated To My Friend Sandie

December 2, 2016 | 34 Comments

You should know, I am a die-hard GWTW fan. I’ve lost track now exactly how many times I’ve watched the movie. But I have read the book only once. I’m thinking I need to rectify that. The GWTW experience for me began as a lonely and homesick thirteen-year old wandering the musty maze of books…

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Things I'm Learning From The US Election

November 12, 2016 | 10 Comments

I’ve been unable to write the past few days. Unable to trust that I’d use my words wisely. And I don’t know for sure I can do that today. Don’t know for sure I’ll hit that publish button when I’m done. But I do know I need to write the words down. Because that’s what…

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The Crash

October 31, 2016 | 4 Comments

Ever been in a spot where you’re all prepared for one thing and then, before you can take your next breath, something happens to flip the entire day upside down? Sure you have. I think we’ve all been there at some point. Maybe you’re there right now. That’s okay. Grab a coffee. Put your feet…

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Running on Empty

September 9, 2016 | 3 Comments

It was one of those nights last night. Sporadic sleep. Sound one minute, wide awake the next. It’s something I’ve learned to live with over the last couple of years, but it isn’t easy. Fortunately, I don’t have to be out the door at o’dark thirty, so when I have one of those nights, I…

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Why I Love Me Before You

June 3, 2016 | 24 Comments

I’m not going to bother with the SPOILER ALERT or DISCLAIMER tags because, face it, if you don’t want to read this, why’d you click the link? I don’t generally jump into these arguments, but yesterday I read something that made me cringe. And I’d had enough. I’m an author. I have been writing fiction…

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And This Is Why The Words Matter …

May 19, 2016 | 0 Comments

So I wrote a piece about Guarding The Writer’s Heart – and it’s true. It’s tough out there. You’re going to get criticism no matter what. It’s just a given. Kinda like running for President. But not. And we won’t go there. But you know . . . this year so far . . .…

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Flashback Friday – Facing Fear

April 29, 2016 | 2 Comments

I was a scared kid. Scared of being alone, scared of being left/abandoned. I think I was scared of the dark for awhile. Timid, shy and terrified of anything that would have me step out of my comfort zone. I had a lovely visual for this blog, an old photo, but I can’t for the…

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Still…Life

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In the aftermath of the celebrations, all is quiet. Still. Things are tidied, relatively speaking, and I’m heading into the new year filled with anticipation. Yet, there is a restlessness within, something I can’t quite comprehend. Something perhaps I need to do, to say, to put aside. But my thoughts still scream loud.

Still.

I’m thinking about my writing. Thinking about what’s to come and how I’ll handle it.

Us creative types don’t have it easy, you know. We’re not analytical thinkers. Can’t prioritize and put things into neat little boxes ready to deal with one at a time, as suits. No. Our minds are a jumbled mess of thoughts and feelings and ideas and triflings, a kaleidoscope of happy madness. And sometimes that’s too much to bear. For me at least.

Because I feel so deeply, you see, and I’d rather not. It’d be so much easier if I could nod and say, oh how tragic, and just move on, move past that pain. But I take things on. I dwell on that awfulness, that sorrow I wish I could lift. That problem I so want to fix. That broken heart I’d give anything to see mended.

Not your problem… No. I don’t suppose it is. But I feel it just the same.

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When I first began to write, I didn’t understand. It was fun. I was having the time of my life creating these little stories that nobody would ever read. It wasn’t something I imagined would become a career. And then one day, that dream appeared, and changed everything. Changed the way I viewed my writing. Changed my very outlook on life.

I see the connection now. The way I’m wired. To think and feel and hurt and rage and love…on a deeper level…is necessary, because how can I possibly hope to express that which I know nothing about? If I don’t feel…I can’t know. 

It’s more now. More than fun. More than just something to while away the hours. It’s a mission, if you will. Being trusted to tell the truth through story. Terrifying. Yet…not. Because it is here, in this space of silence where I can hear my heartbeat over the turbulence inside my mind, here is where the truth lies. Here is where I must listen. Here is where I must trust. Trust myself to know what comes next. Which story should be told. And how to tell it.

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There are thousands of stories in the world. Why should mine matter so much? I’m not exactly sure. But for some reason, here I am. Called to this. And it’s a little daunting. See? Those deep thoughts take over again, make me smile because I know I won’t be rid of them. However much I think I’d like to be, I need them. I need to feel another’s pain as deeply as if it were my own so I can write it down. And when we know pain, we know hope. Eventually joy.

This cycle of feeling…sure it can drive us mad, if we let it, but this…this is the stuff of life. The tears and heartache and melancholy and then a sudden burst of sun through dark rain clouds.

A hand slipping into yours, unexpected, yet a perfect fit.

The first time you made eye contact with that one who seemed to see right into your soul.

Those tears you cried late into the night when you knew nobody could hear.

That anger unleashed over something you never thought would happen. Not to you.

The numbness brought on by grief, standing graveside, saying goodbye.

A smile that says more than any words could.

Laughter that bubbles up, unbidden yet determined to take over till it rocks you, unstoppable, and the tears roll and you feel washed clean again.

Still…Life. 

Crazy, isn’t it? The challenges, the miracles, the mystery…I wouldn’t change the way I feel about things now. No. Instead, I choose to embrace it, the tumultuous blend of thoughts and feelings and experiences that shape us. All of it. It is all for me. To learn and grow and love…maybe a little more than I want to.

This new year…this new beginning…it’s ripe with promise.

And perhaps what we need most will come when we least expect it.

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