The Day That Changed Her Life #It’sSix-SentenceStoryThursdayLinkUp

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

Rain splattered against Paula’s bedroom window that morning, and her heart sank, as she stared at the nebulous sky. Her wedding to Art, a man with whom she looked forward to spending the rest of her life, would take place in the garden that afternoon. “God, I know we need rain but not today!”

A knock sounded on the door, and as she turned, it opened, and her mother appeared, ashen-faced, tears rolling down her cheeks. “Honey, Art’s mother just called. There’s been an accident…and…you won’t marry Art, not today, not ever.”

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Thanks to Girlie on the Edge for inspiring the above work of fiction with this week’s six-sentence story prompt. If you’re a blogger and would like to participate in her hop, click here.

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I’m pleased to announce that my state poetry society, WyoPoets, will hold another virtual reading on Sunday, September 12th, at 5 p.m. mountain time. All are welcome to attend. You can either listen or share a poem or two. Click here for more information.

For those of you who use the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. No matter how you read it, please be sure to review it wherever you can. That goes for all my books. Thank you for stopping by. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

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New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

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Saturday Song: Wish I Knew You by the Revivalists

Thanks to REBIRTH OF LISA for inspiring me to post this song. My late husband Bill and I didn’t meet until the earlier part of this century. In the summer of 1984, I spent a weekend in Los Angeles, attending my uncle’s wedding. At the time, Bill was living in the area. He once told me he wished our paths had crossed back then. Now that he’s gone, I wonder what might have happened if we had met by chance that June weekend.

 

Author Abbie Johnson Taylor

We Shall Overcome

How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

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This I Believe

I plan to submit the following essay to a project called This I Believe, based on the original program broadcast on National Public Radio several years ago. I was tempted to write something like this after Bill suffered his first stroke because I believed that one day, he would walk through the front door and take me in his arms. Although he never walked through that door after his strokes, there were still many embraces, and now, I know what I believe.

A Writer’s Destiny

In January of 2005, I received a letter that changed my life. Being visually impaired, I was in a long distance relationship with a totally blind man I met two years earlier through a magazine. Bill lived in Fowler, Colorado. I lived in Sheridan, Wyoming. We were drawn to each other because I worked in a nursing home, and his mother lived in one. We met face to face twice when Dad and I detoured to Fowler on our way to New Mexico to visit relatives. I thought he just wanted to be friends.

On that night in January, I had to consider the possibility that our relationship would be more than that. I wasn’t ready to share my life with anyone and didn’t want to leave my home town. To my surprise, Bill told me he wanted to move to Sheridan, and this made my decision easier. He came for a visit two months later. At first, I had my doubts, but when he officially proposed to me at a restaurant with family and friends, I said yes.

In July of 2005, Bill moved to Sheridan. In September, we were married. I quit my job and started writing full time.

In January of 2006, I returned home one night to find him lying on the floor, drenched in sweat, barely coherent. After a trip to the hospital, we learned he’d suffered a debilitating stroke. He was eventually admitted to the nursing home where I worked for fifteen years.

His left side was paralyzed, and after two months of therapy, he reached a plateau, and we were forced to face the fact that he might never walk again. In September of 2006, I brought him home and became a full time caregiver.

In October, he started outpatient therapy, and we thought he would be on his feet again. In January of 2007, he suffered a second mild stroke that set him back. He continued outpatient therapy, but in August, they gave up on him. We had five good years until he declined to the point where I could hardly lift him. I moved him back to the nursing home where he died a month later.

I now realize that because of my experience with nursing home residents, some higher power determined that I was best suited to care for Bill when the time came. If I hadn’t married him, he would have ended up in the nursing home in Fowler along with his mother. He wouldn’t have lived as long or enjoyed the same quality of life.

At a dead end with my music therapy career, I started writing. If I hadn’t quit my job with Bill’s encouragement, I wouldn’t have published three books. After Bill’s strokes, I learned to dress him, transfer him from one place to another, and perform other personal care tasks I never dreamed of doing. In the end, he taught me that a disability should never stop you. I believe in fate, that we were meant to be together, even for a short time.

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of We Shall Overcome, How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver, and That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

Order That’s Life from Finishing Line Press.

Order That’s Life from Amazon.