Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Posey and Drew...

...are in a dangerous situation.


    Turning around, I saw Celeste and Norm round the line ofcars, and released a long breath I’d been holding.         “Come on. They’re gone.” I unbuckled my seatbelt and pushed the passenger’s seat forward. “Let’s go.”
    “What?” Posey wiped her tear stained face with the end of her sleeve. “What? No. I... I can’t go now.”
    “Are you kidding me?” I gaped at her. “Don’t tell me you don’t know what’s in that box. They’re transporting.”
    “Transporting?” She shook her head like she was confused.
    “What the hell? Didn’t you say you used to be around this stuff all the time?” I took her hands and squeezed them. “They’re taking speed back to Seattle. They’ll probably going to sell it. If we stick around here, we’re accessories.”
    “Speed?” She closed her eyes and rubbed her temples. “My mom said she was clean. You were sitting right next to me.”
    “Does she look clean to you?” I asked, moving some ofthe junk on the backseat, so I could get closer to her. A filthy blanket fell open, and a gun clunked on the car floor. Sweatpricked the skin at my hairline. “We have to get the hell out of here. These people are dangerous.”
    “These people?” Posey snapped. “She’s my mom. Shewould never hurt me.”
    Groaning, I scruffed my hand across the back of my neck.“Hasn’t she already? Didn’t she abandon you for something like seven years, and let you rot in the system?”
    She flinched like she’d been slapped. “That was below the belt.”
    My insides crunched in on themselves, and I reached forher. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean it. I just... I need you to understand what’s going on here.”
    “Which is what?” she yelled, her eyes filling again. Dammit. I didn’t know if I had it in me to see Po cry another time. “My mother might not be perfect, and she might have been gone a long time. But she came back. She came for me.Doesn’t that count for anything?”
    “No.” My heart was pounding

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Do you have a secret?

Violet does. And it's about time Gabe finds out about it.


    “Do you love me, Violet?” Landon’s eyes were moist.
    This was killing me. It felt like there was a large animal sitting across my chest, crushing me. My phone beeped again.
    Landon’s eyes cooled. “It’s him, isn’t it?”
    I sniffled, reality setting in. It was a knife in the head. “Yes.”
    Fake Elvis deemed this moment worthy of a song, so he drew a breath and began singing “Fools Rush In”.
    Landon put a hand up in his face. “Do you mind?” Then, turning back to me, his frown deepened. “I’m going to ask you one more time. Do you love me?”
    In that instant, I could see Gabe’s face in my mind’s eye and sense his fingers sweeping across my cheek to brush a strand of hair back from my face. Every touch, every laugh, every kiss he and I had ever shared was burned into my brain. This wasn’t going to work. No matter how hard I tried, and no matter how deep into the woods I moved, I was never going to stop loving Gabe. It didn’t matter that he was marrying Alicia. The only thing that mattered was that I couldn’t live a lie. And marrying Landon would be a lie.
    “I’m so sorry.” I choked on a sob. “I never meant to hurt you.”
    Fake Elvis interrupted with the first few lines of “Are You Lonesome Tonight”.
    “Sir, could you please shut up?” I begged, before guiding Landon a foot or two away from the white jumpsuit. “I do love you. It’s just that...I can’t marry you, just to escape my feelings for Gabe.”
    He closed his eyes. “I can’t believe this is happening.” The woman behind the counter announced,“No refunds!” There we were, crying in a Las Vegas wedding chapel, while a chunky Elvis impersonator crooned. What a sight.
    I glared at the woman, then brought my eyes back to Landon’s pale face. “Landon, you deserve better. You deserve someone who loves you with her whole heart. I...I got so caught up in this whirlwind with you.”
    Fake Elvis’s head popped up next to Landon, his waist shaking and shimmying so much that he was brushing against me with his giant belt, while butchering “Don’t Be Cruel.”
    I whirled to face him. “Okay, I’m sorry, but I am going to kick your bedazzled ass in about thirty seconds...”
    The woman behind the counter pointed at me with a bright red nail. “Nobody talks that way to the king!”
    I hoisted my purse up over my shoulder and pulled Landon through the glass doors, just as another intoxicated couple stumbled inside.
    “Congratulations!” the woman slurred as we passed. The man beside her belched.
    As soon as we stepped through the doors, the ninety-degree heat hit me like a slap across the face. It was nearly eight thirty at night, and still stiflingly hot. I missed my cool, wet Seattle air.
    “We’re breaking up,” he said it matter-of-factly, and dropped my hand.
    A statement, not a question.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Have you checked out...

About That Summer yet?



“Molly?”
Startled, I sat up and bumped a fern above my head, which then rained water down on my head. “Great,” I muttered bitterly as a cold droplet rolled down the back collar of my shirt to my bra strap. “Who’s there now? You little punks come back to kick me while I’m down?”
“What?” Jamie emerged through the brush, his blond hair falling in wet scallops across his forehead. “Who are you talking to?”
“Nobody.” I sniffled and put my head back down. “Go away.”
“No.”
“What?” My voice was muffled by my arms.
“No. I won’t go away.”
Glaring up at him, I shook my head. “I know where my cabin is, Jamie. I can get back there by myself. I won’t get eaten by a damn bear.”
“You misunderstood me,” he said, using his teacher’s voice. I hated it when he used that on me. “And didn’t let me explain.”
“Explain what?” I wiped at my cheeks with my forearm, but my forearm was as wet as my face. “I asked questions, and true to form, you don’t want to answer them.”
“That’s not what I meant.”
“Then what is it!?” I cried throwing out my arms, and sending approximately one thousand more drops of residual rain pouring down on my head and shoulders. “You said you didn’t want to go through this again!? What do you want, Jamie? Either you want to talk, or you don’t. Pick a lane!”
He caught my hand and gave it a tug, bringing me to my feet in one swift swoop. Our chests were only an inch apart, and I swear I could feel his heart pounding through his saturated tee shirt. “I didn’t mean I don’t want to go through talking to you again,” he told me, his eyes catching the moonlight peeking through the parting rainclouds. “I meant I didn’t want to go through…” He paused to lick his lips, and I nearly peed my pants. “Thisagain.”
And then Jamie kissed me.
Mother of all things beautiful and holy, he kissed me.
In one fluid moment, Jamie’s hand snaked up my arm to my shoulder, up my neck, then threaded itself in the back of my wet hair. With a nudge that was forceful but achingly gently, he crooked my head to the left and slammed his lips to mine. I gasped, opening my mouth enough for his warm tongue to trace the inside of my upper lip, igniting no fewer than eleven bonfires underneath my skin at key points on my body.
My knees gave out—of course they did—and I fell against Jamie, deepening our kiss to the point where flashes and pops of color exploded behind my closed eyelids. His other arm grasped the small of my back, and his fingers dug into my skin as he pulled apart far enough to nip at my lower lip. My arms looped around Jamie’s neck, bringing my mouth to his once more, and tangling our tongues as my mind begged, closer, deeper, more, don’t stop, please, don’t stop…

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Another year at ECWC, another workshop....

I recently found out that my workshop submission for ECWC 2019 was accepted, and I am presenting for a third time!


It's called The Socially Awkward Author.

The workshop this year won't focus on craft as much as previous years. This year it will focus more on author wellness. Which, isn't my forte. BUT....being socially awkward and having to learn how to function at reading, signings, and conferences IS. Because I am a walking, talking example of a socially awkward author. Well, socially awkward human, if I'm being more specific.



I hope you'll all join me in October! I can't wait!

xoxo
Brooke

Monday, March 18, 2019

It's starting to warm up....

....ready to get into a summer mood?

Grab your copy of About That Summer to read now. Guaranteed to warm you up while the snow melts into spring!



He smiled, and I closed my eyes again. Mother of pearl, I was tired. It felt like I’d taken enough Xanax to put a horse to sleep. “It’s all going to be all right now,” Jamie told me in an unbearably gentle tone. “Don’t panic. You’re in the hospital, and—”
            With a gasp, I lifted my head off of the pillow. “Jamie! The baby! I had a… there was…” I shut my eyes and tried to rub them, realizing that I was hooked up to an I.V. “I’m pregnant,” I said feebly, my words slurring. What was I on?
            Flashes of the last few things I could remember popped into my mind. Feeling the tendons in my abdomen stretch and ache at work. Going home and starting a bath without waking Jamie. Hemorrhaging in the bathtub, and the water going pink. Slipping on the tile floor.
            My IV tubes pulled when I reached up to touch my head. There was gauze wrapped around it, with a large patch of cotton pressed tightly to my temple. “What’s going on?” I asked, trying to focus on Jamie’s green eyes. Over his shoulder, I saw my mother in a chair, crying. “What happened?”
            Jamie’s face dropped. It was then I realized his eyes were circled, and his skin pale. The crying I’d heard in my sleep wasn’t just a bad dream. “You fell getting out of the tub. Hit your head on the corner of the countertop, and cut your temple open.” He forced a smile that did not meet his eyes. “It’s okay now, though. They stitched it shut. You’ll have a cool scar to brag about.”
            I pressed my hands to my belly and yelped in pain. My insides felt like they’d been removed with a garden rake, and everything felt oddly hollow. “What about the baby? I… I didn’t tell you. I wanted it to be a surprise.”
            He pressed his lips together and shook his head. “The pregnancy wasn’t viable.”
            Anger flooded my foggy mind. I hated it when Jamie used clinical terms like that. He started that habit after our fourth miscarriage. Instead of calling them what they were—babies—he called them embryos, cells, viable, aborted… words that made the loss, the deep, seemingly never-ending loss feel clinical and impersonal. And above all else, losing pregnancies was really damn personal. It was as personal as something could get, for hell’s sake.
            I closed my eyes and held my breath. For five seconds, then ten, trying to gather my tsunami of thoughts. That was the last time Dr. Felgenhaur was willing to work with me, so we would have to find a new reproductive endocrinologist. Then, judging by the IV and level of pain I was in, I’d clearly had another dilation and curettage procedure, so we were going to be forced to wait another nine to twelve months before a new doctor would be willing to inseminate me again. Which meant I would be thirty-seven when it happened. My head swam. There was so much to do, and I wasn’t getting any younger. Time was no longer on my side.
“It’s okay,” I finally told him, my voice tight. “We have two more embryos. We’ll have them transferred to the new practice, and—”
A line appeared between Jamie’s eyebrows. “Molly—”
“We might have to sell the house,” I told him quickly, my words all mashing together. “We’ve got equity because we finished the basement—”
“Molly,listen.”
“—we won’t have to pay for another retrieval—”
            “Molly, stop!” Jamie squeezed my hand. “You need to listen to me.”
            I rested my head against the scratchy white pillow. My mother stood up and excused herself from the room, and dread settled over my body like a lead blanket. My mother never missed out on a dramatic moment if she could help it. “What’s going on, Jamie?”
            He closed his eyes and drew a shaky breath. For the briefest of moments, his lips started to tremble, but Jamie cleared his throat fiercely. Then he opened his eyes and focused on the wall behind my head. When he finally spoke, he slipped into his role as teacher, making his tone businesslike and void of almost any emotion. “Your uterus ruptured, and there was three and a half liters of blood pooled in your uterus. The doctor on call couldn’t control the hemorrhaging, and the uterus couldn’t be saved. They were forced to remove it.”
            The blood rushing through my IV suddenly ran cold. “They took it?”
            Jamie didn’t meet my eyes. “Yes.”
            “All of it?” My voice cracked. “Fallopian tubes, ovaries, all of it?”
            “No. Just the uterus.” His fingers gripped mine so tightly it hurt.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Jealousy.

Today I was thinking (as I laid in my bed and contemplated getting up and starting to work for way longer than what is appropriate) about my first book, and the varied responses I got to achieving my goal of being traditionally published.



Spoiler alert: it wasn't all sunshine and rainbows.

Sure, most friends were ecstatic. Over the top supportive and kind and excited for my upcoming release (which was none other than my debut novel, The What If Guy) I was met with what can only be accurately described as jealousy by a select few. It hurt my feelings at the time, and stung for quite a few years after. Even today, nearly ten years later, when I think about it...I get twitchy and aggravated.

Jealousy is an ugly beast.

The definition of jealousy is as such:



I've been jealous before. I'm human. When I was a single, divorced mom of two little kids, I was jealous of the happy, healthy couples around me. I resented their joy and comfort within their relationships, when mine had been so tumultuous and chaotic. I wished I could find someone to be with, someone who would treat me with the respect and kindness that I watched between other couples, sometimes to the point of making really poor decisions when it came to dating. Loneliness and desperation do a real number on a person's judgment, and that's a fact.

But I never felt tempted to tear down or take away someone's functional relationship. I never felt tempted to insert myself, or drive a wedge between married friends, or to critique their relationship--pointing out the cracks and flaws I saw--and reminding them of what they'd done wrong over the years. It never occurred to me that my unhappiness needed to be shared, therefore I left them alone. I smiled and nodded and told them, "I am so happy for you. I hope I can be this in love one day," even when I felt like this on the inside:



So when my first book was met by haters....it threw me for a loop, and I took it more personally than I should've.

I'm not talking about random internet trolls, either. Those are the strangers that I'll never meet, who read my books, give them poor reviews (which I am okay with--any review is a good review, baby!), and find me elsewhere on the web to harass me. Those people are just keyboard warriors, and aren't to be taken too seriously. We all know that.

I'm talking about couple of people in my actual circle who trashed my work. The random friend or relative who took it upon themselves to make sure I knew that they didn't enjoy what I'd created, or worse yet, that they wouldn't ever be reading it, because "romance novels, ew." Yes, it's happened. And yes, it sucked. And it wasn't their unkind words about my life's work that hurt my feelings as much as it was their need to negate, minimize, and invalidate something I worked very, very hard on.

For example, shortly after the release of my debut novel, I got a phone call from a relative that (at the time) I wanted desperately to impress. (I've long since grown up and stopped trying to gain approval from folks who are fully committed to never accepting me, but that's a blog for another time.) But, I digress.....


During this phone call--which lasted for well over an hour, because I was too naive and stupid to hang up--this person went through my book, line by line, chapter by chapter, telling me all the things that they found confusing, boring, unnecessary, excessive, or just plain ridiculous. Because I had this stupid need to please and impress that person, I allowed it. With every unsolicited criticism, I explained myself, explained my reasoning for writing that section that particular way, even going so far as to apologize for why that annoyed that reader so much.

I mean......like, really? Who does that?

In retrospect, I think I hung on throughout that entire, agonizing phone call for two reasons: first, because of my aforementioned need to impress and please said person. And second, because I had this Pollyanna mentality that if I listened long enough, let this person criticize my life's work thoroughly, eventually the conversation would shift, and I would be told the list of things they did enjoy about my book. There would be one of those "...all of these things sucked, BUT you really nailed the....."

But it never came. After an hour of criticisms, the person said, "Well, gotta go. Bye." And the line went dead.

My disappointment was positively palpable. You could've hung wallpaper on the wall with the sticky, oozy, persistent discouragement that was positively dripping off of me for the next several weeks. Months later, whenever I thought about that phone call, I would bristle, and immediately go into a bummed out state for days at a time. Even now, years later, when I think about it, I feel agitated, despite having long since stopped trying to impress the un-impressible.



It doesn't stop there. I've been told that people I love won't or haven't read my books, because it's not their preferred genre. I'm reminded--often--that they prefer "literary fiction," because they're so much more evolved and educated than a romance reader. I'm informed that my writing style is "juvenile" and "unsophisticated," and reminded condescendingly that they support my career, but simply aren't interested in reading my work. Which is fine...........except that it's not.

And it's not just me. This isn't a Brooke Moss B*tching Session, as much as it seems like one. Almost all of the authors I know--and over the decade long span of my career, I've met a lot of authors--have expressed the same sentiments. They all have their stories of friends or relatives who refuse to read their work, refuse to buy their work, negate their accomplishments, or criticize their writing. It's par for the course for all authors. Where there is a positive, (i.e. being a published author, which is truly one of the hardest goals to accomplish, career wise,) there is, and always will be, a negative. All of us authors experience it.

But that doesn't make it okay. It still sucks to be invalidated by someone you love.



I know plenty folks who have written and published books that I would otherwise never read. I have read work written by people I know that have downright sucked. (Mind you, I've also read some completely, mind-bogglingly great work, also, but that's not what this blog post is about.) But, once again, I digress...

I've always bought and reviewed their work, even when I didn't enjoy it at all. I am never such an accomplished author that I can't lower myself to drop $1, $3, or $5, on an acquaintance's eBook, and frankly....I expect the same in return. Even if their genres weren't of interest to me, or their work was subpar or pretentious drivel, I bought it, read it, and reviewed it, because that's what real writers do. We support and encourage others. This business is big enough for all of us.

But you know what I've discovered over time? Jealousy usually rears its ugly head when things are going exceptionally well for me. When I have found success within my career, and I have a loyal readership, and I am being told that my words touched someone in a way that was particularly positive or pleasant.....that's when other folks feel jealous. It should be viewed as a reflection of my success, not a reflection of someone's disapproval. I should be grateful that there is something in my career that another person feels jealous of, rather than being hurt that they're responding negatively.

Additionally, I should be sympathetic to the haters.


If someone is so critical of my work--which was picked by a professional publishing company to publish--then it likely reflects a disappointment in their life. A resentment that their career hasn't hit a level they expected it to hit, and a setback in their own career trajectory. If someone refuses to buy or read my work, because they "don't read romance," then they deserve sympathy because dang! They're missing out on the country's best-selling, and undoubtedly most uplifting and enjoyable, genre! If someone negates my accomplishments, then it's likely because someone in their life is negating their accomplishments, and frankly, that hurts like h*ll. It never feels good to have your accomplishments minimized, no matter what career field they're in!

In a nutshell: jealousy shows more about them, than me.

I wish being an author was all awesomeness and success. I wish all authors could hit JK Rowling status, or Danielle Steele status (the woman owns an island, for pete's sake!) But that's not the reality. Most of us make a humble living, most of us work second jobs, and most of us are far more critical of ourselves and our work, than anyone else could possibly be. We should be lifting each other up, rather than tearing each other down, regardless of how "constructively" or subtly it is being done. It doesn't hurt anyone to be kind and supportive.

And if jealousy still plagues you.....

Get your a*s in front of a computer and start freaking writing. You think you can write better than me? Do it. I'll be the first in line to buy a copy. And I'll even read it and review it, too.



xoxo
Brooke

Monday, February 18, 2019

I hate addiction.

I have been avoiding writing this blog post, because I knew it was going to be incredibly difficult, and because it felt like my words would undoubtedly come up short. I mean, how can a person possibly write enough words to honor someone who was magnificent, but left this earth entirely too soon?



It's impossible!

So I guess I'll just do what I do best, and lay it all out there: addiction sucks, and I am d*mn sick of it taking away people I love.

I got in trouble when I spoke blatantly after my father's death two and a half years ago. I openly wrote about how he was, for lack of a better term, a drunk who'd vacated his responsibilities as a father and grandfather, and ostracized himself until his sad end. I was bitter about how my father's life came to a close, and I told people as much. I told them to sober up and fix their relationships before it was too late, and not everyone appreciated being told that.



But I have had too much loss in my life, and too much hurt in my life, and too much grief in my life at the hands of addiction, and I am ready to climb the walls because of it. Truly. I feel like I could bite my laptop in half, with how angry and sad I am. I lost my father to addiction, long before he actually died. I lost my first marriage to addiction. I lost a relationship with my sibling in part because of addiction. I was a foster mother to children who'd been abused and neglected by addicts.

Most recently, I lost one of my very best and oldest friends. Much like my father, the loss began years ago...and only became official because of actual death this last week. And much to my surprise, I am gutted by this loss. Angered and bewildered and shook to the core by this loss, and it's not because I was so naive to think that she was on the straight and narrow--I've known for years that she was headed down a path that I would absolutely not be following--but because I know, with every cell in my body...that this was not the way she was supposed to go out.



Nope. She was too epic for this kind of a goodbye. She was the kind of person who saw raggedy, strung out, homeless bums on the street, and scolded me for being judgmental. She always told me, "They could clean up. They could get their act together, and be amazing. You don't know. People can change." She saw potential and humanity in every, single person she encountered, and she was willing to fight for their right to be better. She was a humanitarian, in every sense of the word. Helping people, lifting them up, giving them food/clothes/rides/money/a place to sleep. She forgave. She prayed. She rescued. She gave second, and third chances. She believed in every single person she met, and knew their worth was great.

But the cruel irony is, my friend never, ever saw the same potential in herself. She spent her whole life thinking of herself as the dented can of peas on the shelf at the grocery store. The one everyone passes over for the shiny, new cans. The one nobody wanted. That was how she saw herself, despite being willing to put everything on the line to rehabilitate everyone around her.

It started by being born with a birth defect. One so painful and troubling that she suffered and dealt with it's side effects her entire life. Literally 42 years of pain and discomfort, in addition so the social torture that came from being different. She used pain killers religiously, as a means to function like a normal wife/mother/woman, which eventually (after decades of use) grew into a stronger, more frightening dependency.



The last few times I saw her, I could see the difference in her demeanor and her behavior. Her physical appearance started to change. She looked harder, grayer, gaunt. She avoided certain questions and topics. We went from talking about everything to talking about surface level bull****. She wasn't herself. She wasn't the friend I treasured.

It was so troubling that I pulled away. Like I said, she was headed down a path I could not follow. I'd been down it with my ex-husband, my father, my sibling, friends...I couldn't deal with it. So I bailed. We went from being deeply connected, and utterly loving each other in the deepest way two women could be connected (think Idgy and Ruth in Fried Green Tomatoes,) without actually being in romantic love... to texting or messaging every few months or so. My affection was still there.... but I had to maintain space.

I will literally regret that for the rest of my days.



She slipped deeper and deeper in her addiction, eventually turning to illegal drugs, and becoming a full blown junkie. I wish I could scream this to the whole world: That is not the beautiful, loving, epic human being she once was!

She went from loving, attentive soccer mom, to an empty shell of the epic human she'd once been. This was not the girl who befriended me when we were 17, and nobody in my new school liked me. This was not the girl who'd sat on my parents deck until sunrise one night, sharing her entire birth defect/multiple surgeries/social torture story, then listening as I shared how my father had pickled himself while my mom battled cancer, and how I'd never fit in anywhere I'd ever been, including my family. We were both misfits, and we didn't belong anywhere, except with each other.

But she was no longer that person, and I couldn't deal.

From what I am told, she spent her last days stealing from family members, lying to everyone who loved her, going in and out of jail, and burning every bridge she'd ever had...before succumbing to an illness made deadly by a weakened heart from drug abuse and hard living. Her family is inexplicably sad, but also angry and hurt. They're not surprised by the way her life ended, but at the same time, completely flummoxed.



I am utterly heartbroken.

This is not the way she should've gone out. She was bigger than life, hilarious, and passionate to a fault. She was bold, loud, silly, strong, and stubborn. She was the one friend we could all count on to hold our hair back while we puked, and to make sure we didn't get ourselves into a dangerous situation while incoherent. She was the mother, the protector, the guide, the bodyguard. She believed in us when we didn't believe in ourselves. She read all my manuscripts, some dating back to when I was 18 years old, and was the first friend I told when I got my first publishing contract. She was my biggest fan. And now she's gone.

Do not think for a second that you are immune to addiction. Do not fool yourself into thinking that your social status, financial status, location, job, or church participation makes you immune to the stinging, suffocating grip of addiction. Do not assume that you've got it under control. Do not assume people don't know, or that people don't care, or that you're keeping your secret under wraps. If it can happen to my sweet friend, it can happen to anyone, and I implore you to stop right now. Get help, somehow, anyhow....because there are people who do care, who will miss you, and who will ache like I ache if you die.




I am sick of losing people to addiction. Sick, sick, SICK of it. So many lives wasted. It makes me physically ill, not even kidding.

I'm going to my friend's funeral this weekend. I am making a long, uncomfortable journey to a town I swore I'd never go back to, to be there to say goodbye to a friend I loved with my whole heart, and I am not okay with it. I shouldn't be making this journey. I shouldn't be picking out clothes to wear to her funeral. This is not how my winter was supposed to go. More importantly, this is not how her life was supposed to go.

Please reach out to your friends--the ones who have loved every last detail about you, even the ugly ones--and tell them how very much you love them. And if you're close enough to hug them, do it, and do it hard. Because you literally never know when it will be the last time you have that opportunity, and believe you me, you will regret it, if you don't.



I will never stop loving my friend. She will be in my thoughts for the rest of my life, and when I cross through the veil to the next life--at the ripe old age of 80-something, with blue hair and a gold velvet jogging suit on like we always said we would have--I expect her to be standing right there with my dad, waiting to embrace me. Fully whole, completely free. Holy crap, I am so looking forward to seeing her in perfect form.

But in the meantime, I will continue to openly and blatantly share my stories of addiction and loss. I will never sugar coat this awful, ugly disease, and I will never pretend that I don't notice if someone is suffering from addiction. Because I am sick to death of losing people I love.

Please pray for my dear friend's family and especially her daughter. They will need it, and they so deeply deserve it.

xoxo
Brooke