It really struck me, because I’ve had quite a few goodbyes in the past four years…some willing and some very unwilling. I can’t say I’ve always been brave about it. But sometimes I have been.
When my father died almost four years ago and I had to say goodbye to him, I was brave. He had been cheering me on to write Moose Tracks on the Road to Heaven for about two years leading up to his death, and afterward, I faced my fears, a new door opened, and I managed to finish it in a way that made me – and I hope would have made him – proud.
When my then high school-aged daughter was hospitalized with an unexpected and incurable (albeit treatable) illness and I had to say goodbye to the safe and secure understanding of the world that I’d known up until then, I went through a period of shock, disruption and fear. But I ended up being brave. A new door opened over time – one of insight, knowledge, and the discovery of even deeper reserves of love – and it allowed me to be even more the kind of mother and wife I strive to be.
Most recently, when Moose Tracks ran into some road blocks and things didn’t go exactly as I’d planned, I was forced to say goodbye to the publication path I’d intended for it. And for the briefest of moments, I considered throwing in the towel. It had been a LONG haul…literally years of work and obstacles, tears and laughter, and digging deeper than I’d ever dug before. I was tired. But in the end I found reserves of bravery, and for every door that closed in front of me, I forced myself to face my discomfort, turn a corner, and find a new one to open. The last of these doors led to the publication of this novel that has meant so much to me…and according to early readers and two recent reviews, has been useful and enjoyable to others as well, striking the kind of chord and providing some of the thoughts, insights, and hopefulness that I was aiming to share with the rest of the world all along. I have high hopes that over time, this book will find the readers it’s meant to find, and all will unfold the way it is supposed to.
Life is good.
When we are brave enough to say goodbye…sometimes we are rewarded with a new hello. 🙂