I remember the first time I met my biological father. I was twelve years old when he pulled up in front of our apartment. When he got out of his gold Lincoln Continental my first thoughts were, Wow, he's big, tall, and handsome. Standing at six-foot-five, solid muscle, with red curly hair, green eyes, and freckles, I thought he was walking perfection. These were the thoughts of a child who had always dreamed of meeting the 'real' father who would one day come and take her away to a better life.
I soon learned his life was as far from perfect as it could be. He'd won his car and money in the Detroit, Michigan lottery, which was where he lived at the time. He was in an unhappy marriage that had produced three more children I knew nothing about until that day.
And he had major drug problem.
Years later after his divorce, he moved back to Asheville, NC. (our hometown) and tried to clean himself up. After a major battle he did. He enrolled in the local technical college, got his GED, and took some classes, wanting to better himself. He wanted more out of life. He now had dreams. Unfortunately, he didn't have enough time to see his dreams come to past.
He ended up being brutally murdered. He was only thirty-eight.
My mother was an alcoholic all her life, yet she was one of the most talented people I had ever known. She was an excellent seamstress, she could sing, paint, play the guitar, and of course, cook up a storm.
She finally put the bottle down and became sober, wanting to better her life. unfortunately, she did not have time to fulfill the secret dreams she kept inside. Due to the long effects of alcohol, she had a heart attack and died, three days before her forty-ninth birthday.
When I finally overcame my own addiction, moved away and married my amazing husband, family and friends said I thought I was better than them. I have never considered myself better and I will always remember where I came from, but . . . I was better than that kind of life. I wanted more. I had dreams. I still do. Some have come true and some I have yet to reach, but I will never stop seeking more in life.
My point is this. Don't waste the best years of your life away before deciding to fulfill a dream. Make your dreams come true along the way, because tomorrow is not promised to us, and I would much rather be continuously working toward a dream than settling.
Book: Dusty Britches
Author: Marcia Lynn McClure
…Dusty's heart panged a twinge when she saw the bullwhip strapped to the saddle of one of the horses tied to the corral fence. “Why today?” she wondered. Why was her memory tarrying on that young cowhand from five years ago? …"Well…now," a deep, masculine voice said from behind her, "if it ain't Miss Dusty Britches!" Dusty felt the color drain from her face…felt the blood seem to drain from the rest of her body and puddle in her feet. She felt dizzy and nauseated all at once. …There was only one person on the whole of the earth who ever called her Dusty Britches, and that was the cowboy who gave her the nickname in the first place. ...Dusty slowly turned around to see standing before her a man whose eyes were those belonging to a boy she'd once known--a boy who had grown into a man. Angelina Hunter was seriously minded...and it was a good thing. Her father’s ranch needed a woman who could endure the strenuous work of ranch life. Since her mother’s death, Angelina had been that woman. She had no time for frivolity; no time for a less severe side of life. Not when there was so much to be done--hired hands to feed, a widower father to care for and an often ridiculously light-hearted younger sister to worry about. No. Angelina Hunter had no time for the things most young women her age enjoyed. And yet, Angelina had not always been so hardened. There had been a time when she boasted a fun, flirtatious nature even more delightful than her sister Becca’s--a time when her imagination soared with adventurous, romantic dreams. But that all ended years before at the hand of one man. Her heart turned to stone…safely becoming void of any emotion save impatience and indifference. Until the day her dreams returned, the day that the very maker of her broken heart rode back into her life. As the dust settled from the cattle drive that brought him back, would Angelina’s heart be softened? Would she learn to hope again? Would her long-lost dreams become a blessed reality?
I love all of Marcia Lynn McClure's books, but this one is one of my absolute favorites.
Purchase Dusty Britches from Amazon.com or by logging onto her website at Marcialynnmcclure.com
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