Tag Archives: scattered moments

The Pink Nightshirt

Downsizing living quarters is never easy.  During the pre-transition, packing stage it’s a constant battle over what to keep and what to let go.  Will I need it?  Have I used it in the last six months?  Did I even remember I had this?

Many items, even ones I’ve had for years, are tagged for a garage sale or donation or I’m giving them away.  Others, like my pink nightshirt, I can’t let go of.

I re-discovered the pink nightshirt at the back of my nightwear drawer.  I knew it was there because many times over the past several years I’ve told myself it’s nothing but a rag and to use it as such.  But it never made it to the rag bin.  Instead, it was tenderly folded and replaced at the back of the drawer, covered with newer, more fashionable nightwear.

During the pink nightshirt’s most recent appearance I gave it a hard look and decided if I wasn’t going to get rid of it, I might as well wear its sad, pathetic self to bed.  Truly, I have rags in better shape.  It’s worn, it’s thin, it’s frayed, it’s faded.  Yet I can’t let it go.

My mother gave me this nightshirt about a hundred years ago.  Okay, more like thirty-five.  I know my mother.  She didn’t spend a lot on it.  A K-Mart purchase, probably.  But I still remember the feeling of she gets me  I had when I opened it.   Because for the first time in my life my mother had chosen to give me something I’d have chosen for myself.

Before a recent trip to visit my mother who is now eighty-one years old and has severe memory impairment my husband said to me, “She won’t know you.”  My reply was, “She never knew me.”  Which wasn’t meant to be mean or cruel, it was simply a statement of fact.  I don’t think my mother ever knew who I really was.  She never understood me.  We were never close.  My life was lived through the filter of her disapproval and judgment and criticism.  My attempts at being the “good” daughter fell flat and eventually I simply gave up on having anything other than a superficial relationship with her. 

My sense is that my mother viewed her children as extensions of herself, not as separate  individuals.  As long as we conformed to her standards, all went well.  But step over that line and exert your individuality and wham!  Her ways of letting you know you’d fallen far short of her expectations scarred us for life.

Shopping with her was a nightmare. Time and time again her taste crushed mine.  I recall a particular coat-shopping expedition.  I wanted the camel-colored coat with the fake fur collar I’d seen other girls at school wear.  Oh, I wanted so desperately to fit in with my peers.  What I ended up with was a black and white houndstooth coat my mother loved and I HATED, but which was bought a couple of sizes too big so I’d be required to wear it for YEARS.  Is it any wonder that even now I have no fashion sense to call my own?  That I second-guess every choice I make?

The pink nightshirt isn’t going anywhere.  Not to the rag bag or to the trash bin which is probably where it belongs.  It will always have its place in the drawer and sometimes I will take it out and wear it to bed and wash it one more time.  I’ll put it away and I’ll keep it because it reminds me of a mother who doesn’t remember me now but who knew me for one brief moment in time.

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Is This My Scattered Moments Blurb?

A picture is worth a thousand regrets… Scarred by childhood abandonment, Amanda Heinrich is trapped by vows she made to her husband, Martin, her child and herself. Even after she meets her soulmate, Hart Michaelson, she sees no escape from the life she’s created.
While she fights her connection to Hart, her focus drifts from her marriage leaving Martin open to seduction by a woman Amanda considers a friend. Photographer Lyla Decker has an agenda all her own and a camera trained to do her dirty work.
When Hart is accused of murder, photographs surface to tell their own version of the truth: Martin was not the honorable man he was believed to be, nor does Hart and Amanda’s relationship appear at all innocent.
Every choice Amanda has made is cast in a sinister light and Hart’s freedom, as well as her own, hinges on her ability to expose a deranged killer’s secrets.
A camera may capture scattered moments in time. Soulmates capture each other for life.”

Don’t get me started on the angst of writing a blurb. Usually it isn’t such a struggle, but for some reason I can’t encapsulize the gist of Scattered Moments in a few simple sentences. I can say it’s about a married woman who meets her soulmate thirteen years too late, which it is, but there’s so much more to the story. Here are some of my other blurb attempts:

Lonely wife of a wealthy man… Amanda Heinrich sold herself short when she married Martin thirteen years ago. Left with the scars of abandonment by her own mother, she swore she’d be a better wife, mother and woman. She vows to honor her commitments to husband and child.
Wakes at the touch of a carpenter’s hand…When Amanda meets Hart Michaelson she discovers her soulmate and what it means to be truly connected to another human being. Amanda fears retribution from her husband which will devastate her daughter and Hart.
Scattered moments, prying eyes… Amanda and Hart’s innocent encounters are secretly photographed by someone Amanda considers a friend. Those images, along with ones of Martin in compromising positions, become damning evidence when Hart becomes the prime suspect in a murder investigation.
Abandoned lover now despised…Amanda and Hart must expose the photographer as the murderer.

And then there’s this:

Amanda Heinrich meets Hart Michaelson and instinctively knows he is her soulmate. She is forced to examine every choice she’s made, including her thirteen-year marriage to a man who barely notices her. She can no longer deny her role in creating her discontent with the life she thought she wanted. The vows she made to herself long ago may no longer be valid.
Meanwhile, someone Amanda considers a friend lures stuffy Martin Heinrich into an affair by offering him a taste of deviant sexual experiences.
Mysterious photographs of Hart and Amanda’s innocent encounters as well as compromising pictures of Martin begin to surface after a murdered body is discovered on the Heinrich’s property. The images cast a sinister light on Amanda’s relationship with both men, forcing her to confront her guilt and regret. When Hart is accused of the crime, Amanda must save him if she is to save herself.
She and Hart must expose the unseen photographer as the murderer before Hart is convicted. In doing so, Amanda becomes the woman she always wanted to be: A woman deserving of love from a man who’s always known who she really is.

At the moment I’m not thrilled with any of them and even less thrilled with the one that appears on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. I’ve been back and forth with a couple of critiquing friends who’ve given helpful feedback, but one of the wonderful things about being an independently published author is, it’s up to me.

Can’t I just say, “This is probably the best book I’ve ever written. Read it. You’ll love it?”

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Picky Reader – 25

Flirting in Cars by Alisa Kwitney. Sort of a women’s fiction/romance story. I liked it.
Glitter Baby by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I thought I’d read everything of hers, but I must have missed this one. True to form, SEP never disappoints her readers.
Violet by Design by Melissa Walker. I don’t normally read young adult fiction. This was a pretty good book, although if young adults tend to annoy you, don’t bother. The character of Violet is full of contradictions and waffles between being wise and immature. But that is the nature of young women her age.
A Vintage Affair by Isabel Wolff. I enjoyed this book. It has a lot parallels in it and connections made from past to present through the main character who owns a vintage clothing shop. She heals her own emotional wounds by helping a dying woman put her past to rest.
Fools Paradise by Jennifer Stevenson. I read this on my Kindle. It is a laugh-out-loud romantic comedy about stagehands and union infighting. There is one bedroom scene in particular which I found wildly hysterical. Fun and entertaining.
Picky Reader - 25 Here is another book I’m recommending. Scattered Moments. I am still working on a good blurb for it. (Don’t get me started on the angst of writing effective blurbs.) What’s a married woman to do when she meets her soulmate thirteen years too late? Sure there’s lots more to the book than that, a frenemy with her own agenda and a hidden camera, a husband she doesn’t know as well as she thinks she does, and vows she made to herself long ago which she now must re-examine. Scattered Moments is available for 99 cents on Amazon.com and bn.com right now. P.S. I would have posted this blog much earlier if WordPress wasn’t being a pain and not letting me upload my gorgeous cover. I still don’t know how I did it!
Visit me at http://www.barbmeyers.com
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