"Grief fills the room up of my absent child,
Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me,
Puts on his pretty look, repeats his words,
Remembers me of his gracious parts,
Stuffs out his vacant garments with his form."
My creativity has taken a major shot to the gut this past week or so. We lost a foster child that we intended to adopt, after exactly nine months in our care, with not a glance in our direction by her biological family. I cared for that little girl like she were my own flesh and blood. The adoption papers were drawn up. I was as in love with her as I am with my own biological children, and now that we're without her, our house feels broken. When I sent her away with the social worker, I sent away a piece of my heart, and the simple fact that I will never see her again cripples me.
I know that all of my readers are waiting with baited breath for book 3 of the This & That Series (Candace's story,) and I vow that I will write it...eventually. But right now, it is all I can do to keep from falling apart at the seams. Grief is a fickle b*tch, people. It rears it's ugly head right when you least expect it, and it sucker punches when you think you've got it all figured out.
I consider myself a fairly strong person. I grew up in a tumultuous home, got married young, got divorced young, raised two kids by myself before remarrying. I've faced having a child diagnosed with Autism, and the challenges that raising a special needs child can present. I've seen hard times, and I've seen pain. But nothing--I mean nothing--compares to losing a child. And though I've never lost a child to death...losing a child to an uncertain and potentially dangerous and detrimental future from which I am banished feels as close to death as I can get without a damned coffin.
I will write book 3 in the This & That Series. I promise you, my dear, loyal readers. I will never let down all of you--because, simply put: without each of you, I would be a basket case by now. It is your reviews (good and bad,) comments, and messages via Twitter and Facebook that have kept me going through what I will forever refer to as the hardest experience of my entire life. And I won't leave you (and my brilliant editor) hanging. Candace's story will be told. I promise. I just need to take some time for both of us (Candace and I) to grieve a little bit.
I promise to keep you all posted. And please share your thoughts on Baby & Bump and Apples & Oranges with your friends. Help spread the word about these books that have meant so much to me, and have gotten me though the last few months of my life without climbing into a clock tower with a rifle. In the meantime, I am going to do some soul searching. Find whatever helps me heal this ache in my heart. Once I've done that, back to writing I'll be.
Thanks for everything. <3