The Review

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Early in the morning, on April 18, 2019, I received a text message from a company I submitted my book to for a free review. It announced my book review was ready. They astonished me since the site noted that they received thousands of manuscripts daily. They further noted that it sometimes takes over five months for a manuscript review. So I was content to wait awhile for mine. I quickly retrieved the link from my email and held my breath wondering what kind of review I would find. I hoped the review would be positive since I put my all into this second edition of the book. 

After logging in, the first thing I saw was a five-star rating. Then I read the review slowly and carefully taking in every word and storing each jewel in my memory vault. It was so awesome to know that the reviewer was talking about me as an established author. A huge smile creeped across my face and I jumped up and down, saying, “I did it!”  It stoked me and it wired me for the rest of the day. That is why I’m up this late or early writing this post. I didn’t want the day to be over.

I emailed and texted everyone I knew letting them know about my book review. I am so glad someone appreciates my book and all the hard work I put into it. I’m a little emotional just thinking about it.

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Bumps in the Road

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Well, the RSVPs were rolling in quickly and everyone seemed excited about attending my mother’s 80th birthday celebration. I was so thrilled with how the planning was going. Then things started to take a few turns for the worse. My order for the first set of favors had to be canceled due to the company stating they didn’t have any more of the favors I’d ordered in stock after I’d paid in full. The favor company then wanted me to choose a different favor altogether when I had my heart set on getting the color, design, and style of the favor I’d originally chosen. So I had to have my credit card company fight to get the money back from that company while I frantically searched the internet to find a similar favor to order from another company. Luckily the turn around time on that glitch was quick.

The next bump in the road came when my mother’s first cousin became very ill and could not travel to our town to attend the event. He was one of the key speakers listed on the programs that I’d already designed and printed. So I had to become a speaker in his place on my mother’s birthday. Little did I know that there would be more bridges to cross on the road to planning such a meaningful and deserving event for my mom.

Do you remember the dance to My Girl by the Temptations that I mentioned a few days ago? Well, that became the next problem to be dealt with. You see my vision was to have my nephews, each of my sister’s husbands, and my son to perform a dance to the song for my mother on her special day. There was a dress code agreed upon and a rehearsal schedule created to be followed by everyone. However, most of the parties involved could not find time in their schedules to meet together at my house for rehearsal each week. So a few weeks before the event only my son and myself had the dance routine remembered. In an attempt to salvage the performance and have it still be an all-male dance group I asked an old friend of the family to step in because he could come to rehearse more often. However, even he could not remember all aspects of the choreography. So I decided that my son and I would perform the dance for my mother as a duo.

Do you think I would let any of those obstacles stop me from accomplishing this goal of planning and celebrating my mother’s 80th birthday in a major way? Well, you don’t know me too well if your answer is yes. I don’t just walk around obstacles in life, I soar over them always landing on the wings of angels. One cousin from Maryland, another cousin from Philidelphia, my oldest sister and myself all spoke at the event. My son and I performed the dance we’d rehearsed, and I sang a solo to my mother, my angel, on that special day. The ambiance, the food, the favors, the video montage, the dancing, the conversation, and most importantly the memories made that day will never be forgotten by those who attended the event I am most proud of planning: My mother’s 80th birthday celebration. The memory of her smiling the entire day while dressed to the nines and being surrounded by loved ones as we all danced and celebrated her life will always be with me. She will be 81 years young this spring.