It’s been more than six months since my last post, and I have a simple explanation for my silence. Several weeks ago I put to rest my wife’s remains in a small, private ceremony among family and friends. She lost her battle with cancer after more than three years. She put up a damn good fight. And I miss her so deeply I have no words to express it, which is probably part of the problem as I was ambushed by grief some weeks following her death, and nearly had a nervous breakdown.
Thankfully, I work for an awesome company that granted me a two-week paid leave-of-absence, even though I had no paid time off banked. Friends and family intervened once I’d made known my struggles. I could not work, I could not write, and I felt as if I were being dragged unwittingly down a path from which I might not return. A lot of things went through my mind during that horrible week–suicide just one of many among them. But God, the God I know anyway, pulled me back and through the response of friends and family to my plight showed me He was there. He’d been there the whole time, thumping my heart to talk to Him. I was just too blinded to see it.
Fast forward to a week or so ago when I returned from my leave. That time I spent away from home and avoided anything that might remind me of her, a wholly deliberate move on my part to eschew potential triggers, wound up giving me a new perspective and in very many ways changed my life. All of it for the better. I made new friends, and I discovered that if I was just willing to open up to others–to be vulnerable despite the fact it rubbed against my norm of being a very private man–the positive responses were overwhelming!
In fact, the very first day I was in Key West I began to write again. And write and write and write. My senses were honed to a razor’s edge. The input was almost too much. And I received more grace and mercy and good people in my path than I could have ever imagined. The entirety of my experiences taught me a priceless lesson: in loss, NEVER compromise your faith and never lose hope. Cling to it because in these types of situations, you don’t have to go it alone. God provides compassion, just as he does food in the mouth and clothes on the back!
I’m now working on two brand new books. One is a non-fiction piece titled PRISONER OF HURT. The other is the first of a series of private-eye novels. Both are attempts to express my experiences over these past few years as I battled my wife’s cancer alongside her. Right up to the point I kissed her and wept over her as she took her final breath in the home she loved. This is what she wanted and I am content I have done right by honoring her every last wish.
In conclusion, I would just like to ask you to watch for both of these books as they will be published before this year is out. And then many more books thereafter. And I couldn’t care less how many or few copies they sell. If my writing can just help one person, it will all be worth it. If it can help thousands or tens of thousands, all the better! I ask for your continued empathy and prayers (if you are so inclined), and I thank you for your patience with my long absenteeism.
And greetings from my sweet girl and writing partner, Maggie May!