Would have, Should have, Could have!

How badly do you want it?

Does that sound like you?

Many of you know that my closest friend was sick. My friend passed, and last week was the funeral. I was tasked with providing the Eulogy.

As a writer, I am blessed as I can turn a colorful phrase, provide an anecdote that people will resonate with, and make sure that I keep it light.

As a friend, this was one of the hardest things that I have ever written. I knew this person intimately. As a matter of fact, I knew them better than anyone else alive. It was only fitting that I was tasked with the Eulogy.

There are many stages of grief, and I am still at the guilt stage. I wanted them to hang around longer, fight harder and don’t let the bastards win. My friend was tired of the battle and the doctors and ready to go be with the lord.

The guilt is from I was thinking about me, and not them.

I am sure I will be turning the corner and running into lonely soon enough, as the hard cold facts settle in.

My friend is no more.

The phone number will cease to work and my caller id will no longer pop up with that name.

The difference between myself and even my parents was that when I breathe my last breath, I am hoping not to have too many of those “I should have or could have done this or that’s, undone.”

You are in control of your destiny. It is easy to blame someone else, but when it comes down to it, you are in control.

How badly do you want it?

To distract myself while my friend was in the process of dying I accepted a challenge to write a novel that is somewhat racy. A complete work of fiction of the 50 shades variety has garnered more attention than any of my other published works, and I just released it.

An email from a naturist wanted to read a book about that subject. They had just red Cyber Subs and liked it, so I blended naturism and 50 shades type material together.

It was not a matter of should have or could have, it was a matter of just doing it.
It is one of those fun reads that you read late at night on your Kindle when the kids are asleep.

If you are like me when I read before I go to sleep, often times I find elements of what I read in my dreams. Kind of fun if you have a vision like that and don’t wake up with red stripes on your backside.  🙂

My friend that passed knew me well too. My friend was a constant companion for many years and in fact my personal cheerleader. If I wrote a Sci-Fi great. If I wrote a young adult story, Great. If I write something like Nudist of Shangri-La, great! If I write about witches super. Whatever I write about is just that, a creative story that will resonate with some, and not with others. That is ok.

The question is, what do you want to read? What will sell?

I was editing the story last night before I went to bed. You can make notes on your Kindle, did you know that?

Anyway, I was reading the 11000-word sex scene that will entice you to not put the book down. Reading it from the frame of mind of an editor, I didn’t recognize my handiwork. If you did not know me one would wonder what kind of person I was?

I am a writer that can put myself in any mindset I choose to. I could be a nun or religious nut in one story, or a mass murderer in another. I can pilot a spaceship from one galaxy to the next, and stand toe to toe with NASA’s brightest in the next.
I am a writer. I am only limited by my imagination and time.

“You can be that too.”
Many of you who read my blog are bloggers and authors. I follow you, and as time permits I look at what you have written. Most of you are quite talented.

Turn all of your “should haves” into “I did that!”

When the bell tolls make sure that there is nothing left on the table. Live your life!
Thanks for all the well wishes during this somewhat rough patch of road. Who knows, tomorrow I may meet a new person who will need a friend like me.

Much Love -TW

Are You Blind?

Time is our stock in trade, use it wisely.

This topic has never been lost on me.  As we age and we bury more and more of our friends and family life takes on a new meaning.

I watch social media accounts and am consistently amazed at people.  “Damn, tomorrow is Monday!”  “Yipee, Tomorrow is Friday!”

I used to think like that.  I had a job that I liked most of the time, but it had its moments.  Carrying a product sample kit into a large medical facility in the Texas Medical Center during the summer is a task all to itself.  Add a tropical “disturbance” into the mix along with the August heat, and it is like being in a steam room only with hot water hitting you as well.

Walking into a clinic for cancer patients puddles off rainwater were around me as I closed the umbrella trying to make myself look as if I had not just been in the torrential rain when an older black man caught my attention.  There he was in a suit, tie, and hat looking as if he were headed to meet with some group of investors.

No, that man was a patient, and he just wanted to look his best.  He was jovial, and I was trying my best to understand him as we got on the overloaded elevator. We were in fact headed to the same place so as we walked together down the hall I asked him, “How about this Houston weather?”

I was expecting him to complain like most New Yorkers do, or to grumble as most would who just walked several blocks in the rain from the parking lot but no, he amazed me.

He said, “It is a beautiful day!” Ok, maybe the guy was blind.  “Beautiful?”

“Any day the good lord lets me suck in air in the morning, it is a beautiful day.”

It was me that was blind.  I never forgot that.  I look at life differently as I make my way through each and every day.  Did I use my time here in a productive way?  Did I assist someone else on this journey we call life?

Yesterday I was at another funeral of a family member.  The drive was long, and the traffic was brutal.  The church was out in the middle of nowhere, but I got there early.  As family members came through the doors, it was a mixture of tears and laughter.

The funeral is not for the deceased it is for you, and the rest of us “still sucking air.”

Indeed this was a celebration of this man’s life.

After a lengthy service, we ate a meal together provided by the church.  We visited with family that I had not seen in years and made a promise to keep in touch.  One last thing to do before the sunset was to drive another fifty miles to this small cemetery out in the country and say our final farewells to this man who brought so much happiness to so many.

The wind was out of the north blowing, howling actually, bringing the windshield down to the teens.  For Texans that is cold!

I was dressed for it, but many were not.  As the final words were said, the first spade of soil was tossed into the hole by his last remaining brother.  There was not a dry eye there as turns were taken to throw some dirt in the grave.

We departed the cemetery as the last rays of sunlight were casting auburn fingers across the sky as if to reach in and grab the soul of our family member, and take him home.

Driving the several hours back to Dallas the day played through my mind.  Each and every conversation with family members, each hug, handshake and the warmth of the members of that small country church played through my thoughts.

Late last night as I checked my e-mail I read of yet another friend who passed away and soon I will making my way to East Texas.

As I write this tonight, I wonder if I made the best use of my day today. I was tired and did not do too much of anything.  I played with the cats, wrote on my latest book, tried to teach myself another song on the guitar and admired Mary Chapin Carpenter for her talents.  I am ending this day thinking of you who take the time to read my blogs and novels and of course tweets.

Don’t let today slip away my friends, it will never repeat itself! Did you make good use of your time here sucking in air?

Much love!  -TW