I have been able to beat the odds in many ways during my life time. These incidents have created a rather positive outlook for me, which is probably a good thing. Yet, maybe I’m just fooling myself.
I was single all through my 30s, and never had a steady relationship until I turned 40. I grew up in the male-depleted generation, and often thought my soul mate had died in Vietnam. I read articles that told me I had a better chance of being struck by lightning than getting married. Mike and I always marvel at the fact that we did find each other. I just needed to be willing to love a younger man. Oh, what a sacrifice!
Mike was still married at the time I met him. A dear friend gave me the book which I have since given away and can’t find on Google about dating married men. The bottom line, and something this friend had experienced herself, is that a married man won ‘t leave his wife for his girlfriend. So I had no expectations of having a long-term relationship with him. Mike never read that book. He had long since been emotionally removed from his marriage, and when asked by an interested third party a pointed question, he realized he wanted out.
The question was, If you learned you only had two weeks to live, who would you want to spent that time with? He chose me, and neither of us have ever regretted it.
Shortly after we were married, Mike and I got custody of his two youngest children. The battle to win them from their abusive mother was nothing compared to the struggle to raise the money for the lawyer’s retainer. My own parents told me that the courts would never take the children from their mother. Granted, I hadn’t realized I failed to tell them about the scary things going on, and that Child Welfare Services were involved and on our side, but still it hurt to not have their support. Six months later, and deeply in debt, we were granted full custody.
Sometimes I did think I did myself harm in pushing for custody. Mike had his doubts about the whole business, but supported me. And I knew by then this was my only shot at motherhood. Looking back, I wish I had been a perfect mother, but my daughter was too much like her mother and too much like me on a bad day. I did finally get help for my depression, and found out how to focus on positive thoughts moment by moment. And our son is the very best kid any parent could ever want. I love that he still feels comfortable coming here to talk over the issues that come up in his life.
All these ups and downs and beating of odds have found their way into my writing. My Romance will always have a happy ending. And my life as an author? There’s what I need to know. I pitched my Regency Romance to an agent some weeks ago, and she asked me to send it when I felt comfortable with it. She even knows an editor who likes these sort of stories. So even though I only have 2 rejection slips, and those are from before I married, do I have to get a few hundred? Am I setting myself up for a huge fall by thinking this book is as good as sold?
“You fail only if you stop writing.” Ray Bradbury. I can’t stop writing, not only will the people in my head not let me rest, but the critique group and fans on Scribophile tell me to keep going. The truth is, publishing the traditional way will be an awesome step on my path, but I am not afraid to go the self-publishing way. What are the odds?