Courage in One Hand

Let me tell you a story.  In the early 70’s, a young 15 year old girl found herself in an impossible situation.  In spite of her desperate desire to keep her child, the baby was put up for adoption, and that was that.  Her grief, with nowhere to go, landed on pages and was poured into poems and love letters to her baby.

On the other side of this story is a young couple desperate for a child.  Their wounded dreams and broken hearts were tenderly mended when the baby was placed in their arms, and their family made complete.  Their joy was also recorded, but this time as letters and cards of celebration and congratulation.

The baby?  Well, she turned out to be quite a precocious little girl.  Just like her mother, she found solace in writing and joy in the task of putting pen to page.  Her father and mother fed her imagination with books and told tales, and even as a primary school student she dreamed of being a writer.  And then life happened.  The girl didn’t feel so shiny and clever as she once did.  Her confidence was shaken, as it happens to all of us, when unkind words and adversity find us.  In the end, as an adult, she quietly packed away her dreams of writing and went about the business of living.

That is, until she found herself in a new workplace, in her mid thirties.  There was nothing particularly remarkable about where she worked, except for the beautiful women there who began to encourage the story-teller inside her.  Their words landed soft on her heart, and began to bury themselves in her mind.  She dusted off the desire to write, and turned it over in her hands.  The feeling of the story began to bubble up, and for several years it simmered there, just beyond the day to day.

At the same time, this woman married the man who would change her life.  He too began to nudge her toward her dreams, and his steady strength began to soften the hard places in her defenses.  The risk of writing, and the fear of being unremarkable began to diminish like a melting ice cube.  Her confidence grew until at last she found her voice.

In the end, the woman grasped her courage in one hand, and a laptop in the other and began to write.

To my husband, Mark:  you are my inspiration!  The world is more beautiful with you in the viewfinder, and you amaze me every day with your intelligence and insight.  Pigs fly, baby!

To Tiffany, Gabi, Patty, Stacy, Chrishawn, Stacey, Laura and Lety:  you are the current that swept me away, and I’m eternally grateful for your friendship and encouragement.

And finally, to Cheryl, Rod and Pam:  any success I have as an author is yours.  I’m so proud to be your daughter.  


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