Today's post is the first stop in conjunction with the Blog-A-Licious Blog Tour a fantastic blog hop that brings together bloggers of all genres, backgrounds and locations. The blog featured after Peace from Pieces is the heartwarming How About This. Do stop by and say hello to her and the other participating bloggers. I'm pretty certain some of us are even having giveaways and contests. Enjoy! For a full list of all participating blogs, click HERE.
A world without books will most definitely be a world without expectations. We will not have the opportunity to learn and grow from the experiences of others. Even worse, we will not learn the lesson of having expectations for ourselves.
If we did not have books, we would not have Charles Dickens and if we did not have Dickens, we would not have Great Expectations in more ways than one. Charles Dickens had one of the hardest childhoods any child would ever know. He worked long hours for very little money to help his family and very few people thought anything good would come from such a debt ridden family. And yet, centuries later, with his work still influencing so many of us, this is a fact one would find hard to believe. If anything, Great Expectations has taught us to believe that things aren't always what they seem and most times life will surely give you the expected in unexpected ways.
Years ago, when I had lost everything and left only with the clothes on my back because I had trusted the wrong people, a family member told me that once they had had a lot of hope for me. But crippled with so many failures, a rare medical condition which no one understood and not turning out the way they had wanted, I was now a failure. There was no more hope for me, she said. She then let out a series of dramatic sobs to the point one would have thought someone had died. I crumbled. Even if I hadn't felt like a failure before, her words crushed me to the point of insignificance. I sort solace with two of my oldest friends. Both have been around even before I was diagnosed with BIH, stayed on as the pieces fell apart and irrelevant of distance, time or issue, both offered hope. Every time we spoke, they would listen, they would comfort but two reminders were constantly drilled into my thick skull and depressed emotions. The first was "you do not give up on hope, ever". The second was "pick up a pen and write". Now, after more than a week of being #2 on Smashwords > Best Seller list the experience still feels surreal and yet, it is happening.
I first wrote Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out as a blog post. The title seemed apt as I was on the brink of my shunt surgery. When I actually received comments, I thought, "impossible", people were actually reading my work and were asking for more, and so it bloomed. One article to my very first novel. I had been sending out Frequent Traveler (which will now be my second novel) for months and months, each time it was rejected with a politely worded letter that my work was suited for some other publishing house. Then I thought, instead of taking myself apart about the rejections, I would take the story apart and send out Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out, instead. A fellow writer said, keep writing out the chapters, someone would be bound to spot it. When my publisher first wrote in and indicated interest, I thought "no, I must be dreaming". I read the email at least three times, closed it and opened it again just to make sure I was reading it right. So, here's the second expectation you must have. Faith in God. Faith in yourself. You have a talent. If you haven't found it, keep searching but it's there and you're not that worthless, no matter what people say.
After a night out with the guys and as he sat chomping KFC, Peas blurted out "will you be my girl?" I laughed. I thought it was hogwash. I didn't trust him. More to the point, I didn't trust myself. What if I screw this up? What if I do something later on and he'll hate for me it? As it is, he knew bits of me, everything others had hated about me this person was sitting and saying, he wanted more of me. I didn't believe that I was capable of receiving love. I was wrong. We all need love. Be it the love that mends the broken bits of you, the kind that takes you back no matter how silly you've acted or the kind that reaches out to you when you fall, we all need it. It may not come from the people you expect and it most certainly won't come when you want it, but it'll be there when you need it. God knows how much to give you, when to give you. Trust in this. Expect love.
So, if there is one thing I can pass on from my humbling experiences in life, thus far, I will tell you this, the next time someone tells you "the absence of expectations is the absence of disappointment, do not listen. Have expectations. Keep them great. It'll be a very bumpy ride. You'll even get bruised, sometimes very badly. Sometimes, you'll come to an abrupt halt or even fall off your ride. But you'll grow. And if you do not grow, you do not live. Love and light.
Thank you being a part of the Blog-A-Licious Blog Tour!
Should you like to receive a complimentary copy of one of the following
1. Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out (Fiction, Novel)
2. Writing 101, 10 Simple Tips to Establishing Yourself As A Writer Using Social Media (Non-Fiction)
3. 10 Ways to Stop Your Panic Attacks Quickly, Simple techniques to keep your panic attacks from getting the best of you (Non-Fiction)
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