Is That Everything That’s Going to Happen?
“Is that everything that’s going to happen in the next book?” The concept editor for my cozy mystery series, who happens to be my daughter, pointed to the short stack of notecards I’d set on the kitchen table.
I stared at the cards, more than a little ashamed by my lack of preparation for our appointment. We’d scheduled our meeting to hash out the plot of this book almost a year before. In the meantime, my mother’s health had taken a turn for the worse. Her struggle had ushered in a season of uncertainty and change. I was becoming all too familiar with being unprepared and unfocused.
“Well,” I said, “I know how the story starts, and I know how it’s going to end. But I have no idea about what’s happening in the middle.”
My daughter nodded. “I understand. Now give me a few minutes to read through what’s here.”
While she read, my mind wandered to a September forty earlier when my husband and I found out we were going to become parents. We spent the next 8 months getting ready for our baby’s arrival. We took childbirth classes, transformed the guest bedroom into a nursery, and bought a car suitable for a family of three. We purchased diapers and onesies and sleepers and more.
We did everything in our power to be ready for our baby’s arrival. Even so, after he was born and his life-threatening condition was diagnosed, we felt totally unprepared to be his parents. We knew only two things: our son’s life had begun and that it would end–perhaps far sooner than we hoped. As for what would happen in the middle, we had absolutely no idea.
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Jolene Philo is the author of the Different Dream series for parents of kids with special needs. She speaks at parenting and special needs conferences around the country. She’s also the creator and host of the Different Dream website. Sharing Love Abundantly With Special Needs Families: The 5 Love Languages® for Parents Raising Children with Disabilities, which she co-authored with Dr. Gary Chapman, was released in August of 2019 and is available at local bookstores, their bookstore website, and at Amazon. The first book in her cozy mystery series, See Jane Run!, features people with disabilities and will be released in June of 2022.
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