A phoenix obtains new life by arising from the ashes of its predecessor. Though we grieve the loss caused by tragedy, there is hope for new life through the transformation gained from knowledge.
This is far more of a serious post than any of you have seen from me, but life isn’t always about fun and games. We all have events and tragedies in our lives that touch us in different ways.
Yesterday (August 22, 2015) I attended the memorial service for a young girl from my small community whose life ended tragically, way too early, at the age of 23. I didn’t know Sarah “Belle” very well personally, but I have known her mom and step-dad for about ten years and although it started as a business relationship, I have come to know these wonderful people and consider them friends. I grieve for them, and their family, for their loss.
What I do know is that Sarah “Belle” was a vibrant young lady who had a zest for life with a passion for writing, the arts and animals, though she wasn’t without her demons and challenges. Like many young people she had played a dangerous game with addiction and in the end she lost. I also know that she came from an extremely close, caring and loving family; that her parents, grandparents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends all loved her deeply. She was not alone and she was surrounded by very good people in abundance.
I think when tragedy strikes, especially in the case of a young adult, human nature is to question what might have been going on behind the scenes that the public couldn’t see. To question what might have caused some of the poor choices that were made or that pushed them down a particular path. In the case of this family, I know that was not the case. A person couldn’t ask to be surrounded by more loving and caring people. I believe that this is often the case more times than we care to acknowledge. Probably because it makes it that much more difficult to understand or make sense of.
But frankly, it’s not just teens and young adults who come from difficult backgrounds or circumstances that struggle and have challenges. It’s not just the ones who are dealing with extreme situations who are at risk of being tempted by dark paths or who struggle with effective problem solving skills. And sometimes I wonder if perhaps these individuals, who come from stable, loving homes, don’t fall through the cracks a bit in our society’s support system as so many assumptions are made that they aren’t dealing with severe enough problems. This may sound extreme, but, a hangnail that becomes infected and is left untreated, in theory, could turn into gangrene and result in amputation – so who are we, as a society, to decide what problems are severe enough or not? Please understand that I am generalizing here, this is not to suggest that Sarah and others like her “have” been let down in the area of support, just that it “can” happen. Sometimes, everything possible that can be done has been done, but at the end of the day we all make choices.
I’m not a highly influential person and I don’t have a lot of money, but I have been pondering if there is anything that I could do that might help to honour the life of Sarah “Belle” and potentially that of other young people both passed and living.
My book is not about teen addictions, however, it is about teens, the challenges they face, the choices they make and the paths they choose – which for so many can become the gateway to the slippery slope of addiction. It is my hope along this journey, that my book will have a positive impact on even one teen out there and make a difference in how they approach life and the way they choose to deal with and react to various situations.
Because of her love for animals, the family of Sarah “Belle” requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the BC SPCA as Sarah’s hometown and place of birth was in BC (British Columbia, Canada).
The elven village of Eytherfel, where Dreams of Beautiful Whisper takes places, is set within the magical forests of British Columbia, even though it is in fact a fictional location.
After much thought and reflection this weekend I have decided that I would like to help honour the life of Sarah “Belle” via my book – the only tool I have available to use. As such, $1 from the sale of every book through until the end of September (which is also the month in which Sarah was born) will be donated to the BC SPCA in her name. I know that this won’t set the world on fire in the realm of donations and if I could do more I would, but my heart is behind it.
I hope that teens and parents of teens will take this opportunity to not only honour the life of a beautiful young lady who was far more radiant inside and out than she ever fully realized or accepted, but to also embrace a piece of entertaining fiction that just might give a young adult a new perspective on problem solving, self-appreciation and the options available to them for the paths they choose.
Dreams of Beautiful Whisper is written from the perspective of a teen who comes from a close, loving family and a strong support network. Unlike most modern entertainment it doesn’t try to make its point by dwelling on and depicting the consequences of poor choices and tragedy. Instead, it represents a journey of strong problem solving skills and the power of choice in a positive light.
As you read Dreams of Beautiful Whisper I hope that you will send thoughts and prayers to the young adults in your past, present and future, like Sarah “Belle”, that wherever they are, they find the guiding light they seek and need for themselves and to help others.
Donate to the BC SPCA in the memory of Sarah “Belle”, purchase Dreams of Beautiful Whisper on Amazon.