"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great." Mark Twain
Some days my writer's brain is on overdrive and I can't seem to shut it off no matter what I do. That's a good thing, right? Then there are days when coming up with even one line is like pulling a tooth with no Novocaine. (Think Chuck Nolan in Cast Away) Yes, it is that painful. Then there are days like today, when brain and inspiration are copacetically in harmony and all is right with the world.
So, after finishing another story today, I have declared the next two weeks I Love Being a Writer Season! Celebrate with me by grabbing some chocolate and a good book (a large Symphony bar is an awesome choice) and escape into another world for a while. If you are a writer trying to meet a deadline, just take an hour to enjoy that happy place. You will be glad you did:-)
On April 6th, my new novelette Say What You Need to Say will be available on Amazon in Kindle format.
Free-spirited Capri Harris has always embraced life to the fullest, but a major health trial brings unexpected changes and her outlook shifts, leaving her with doubts of her worth to any man. Like the force of a hurricane, Jagger Colby enters Capri's life, weakening her resolve and shaking the walls of self-preservation she has tried so hard to build around her heart. But Capri knows that once Jagger discovers the truth about her, he will walk away and never look back.
When words mean everything, say what you need to say.
“Come on, Doc. You've known my family for years. Shoot, as a baby, I even peed on you when you changed my diaper and initiated you into the family, so just say it.”
Unsmiling, the older man rubs his temples with his thumb and index finger a moment before meeting my eyes. “Capri, you have ovarian cancer.”
Hearing those words completely shifts my world. I am almost twenty years old with my whole life ahead of me. I am just beginning to live, to plan, to dream, to experience. Cancer has never been a part of the plan.
Four days ago the tumor made itself known, and even then, cancer never entered my mind. I mean, young women get benign cysts all the time. Okay, not all the time, but it happens, especially–I am told–when it runs in the family. Both of my grandmothers passed away from ovarian cancer in their later years. They were old and it just happened.
Still, isn't supposed to happen to me.
My parents are what people classify as free-spirited granola naturalists. All of my mother's prenatal care was given by a midwife and the births were all home water births. We are one of the healthiest families I know. Dad's Catawba Indian ancestry passed down fifty different ways to use corn, and Mom brought her island cooking skills when she immigrated from Jamaica. Twenty-five years in the states and she still speaks with a strong Jamaican brogue, especially when she's angry or upset.
Living on a ranch my whole life, my four older brothers and I were raised on natural everything–raw milk, whole grains, organic vegetables we grow ourselves, fresh eggs laid by our own chickens, beef from our cattle, bacon and pork from our pigs, herbs grown in our greenhouse–so unhealthy eating is definitely not the cause of the disease living inside me. It is genetics.
Through an emotional haze I listen to the man I've known as Uncle Jake all my life go over the hysterectomy procedure and treatment afterward. He says my healthy lifestyle is definitely in my favor and recovery will most likely be quick, and hopefully, permanent. Still, my brain translates his words into one repeated line:
I will never be able to have a baby.
I am sent to a counselor down the hall who gives me a packet of information and suggestions for coping with the coming changes. With her red bouffant hair, flared skirt and pink cat-frame glasses, it's hard to take her seriously. I figure it must be fifties week around the office, possibly a morale booster. As she counsels me to face this ordeal head on, I bite back a sarcastic retort of, “What else am I going to do, close my eyes and wait for it to go away?” But I know she is only doing her job and I do appreciate the information.
I walk out of the medical building feeling like a completely different person. I know my life will soon change. It is inevitable and I accept this.
No counseling needed.