WAR!

 

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What do your children pass on the streets on the way home from school?

What would you be prepared to do to save them?

So today I want to honor the victims of war in general. Those who lost family members in the Holocaust, those who lost fathers or grandfathers who fought in the war, and you who will be reading this note and nodding your head. We too are victims. We too suffered the effects of the long-term war.

My father, and uncles participated in World War II. Although I’m Canadian and was not a child of this era, my Dad was in the Royal Canadian Army Signal Corps and was stationed in England.

My father never talked about the war. I remember watching programs on TV with the family years later. But I never really knew what he did. Was he in combat? Was he in an office behind listening devices. Did Dad code, or decode messages? Dad was a recognized Math genius. He entered competitions every year in the military. And my father kept a workroom in every house we lived in, to use his ham radio and talk with people from all over the world. So it’s possible he was involved in things he could never talk about. Or saw horrible deaths that he carried in his mind and heart his whole life. I will never know.

My Dad left a special legacy for us, the children of a parent who fought in the war. His legacy was anger and pain. He drank excessively. He fought with my mother. Although I never saw physical abuse–or maybe I blocked it–my younger sis says she saw marks on my mother’s neck.

I remember Dad drank excessively and by dinner time he was impossible to talk to. We fought all the time. My family dinner memories were of me leaving the table crying. I don’t think I ever finished a meal in my teenage years. My sis remembers only that I was the one who spoke up, so she didn’t have to!

My childhood was not pleasant. I suppose at the time, I didn’t know the difference. It was my reality. But with early blanked memories, I know there were things that happened that my mind has decided I don’t need to remember. And I’m good with that. I was one of the lucky ones. I suffered no long-term effects of that period on my life unless you count several divorces, and the inability to form deep, trusting relationships. I’m sure I’m not alone. Unfortunately, to this day, the men and women who go to war bring it home with them. It’s not their fault, I understand that. And many will get help and life will go on.

I implore legislators around the world, governments, who merely sit in the gilded cages and sign documents allowing militaries to destroy economies and lives, to think, just stop and think, about the ravages of war. Think about our own militaries–my nephew who served several times in Kabul, my SEAL friends who’ve lost their lives and those of their friends. Think about the long-term effect of war zones and war, before you routinely decide to blockade a region, turn off food supplies or close your borders!

Mexico, shame on you for separating men from their families and only permitting women and children to come through on Caravan from war-torn Central America. You must take full responsibility for the kidnapping of 100 women and children this past week. It doesn’t matter that its drug cartels or human trafficking rings, you alone bear the responsibility for leaving them unprotected.

And the US, I have no words for the leadership of the USA. The world once believed it was the greatest nation in the world. Everyone wanted to go to America. And now the best and the brightest from around the world are afraid to join your working ranks. Some refugees have no choice but to flee or die. But others have choices, and they are choosing to seek great job opportunities in other nations, places where they are wanted. If you’re not careful, all that will be left in the USA is the next generation of racists.

So take this moment to put yourself in the shoes or no shoes of the people who are fleeing the countries that in many ways first-world-countries have helped to destroy. Think about bearing responsibility for our actions in all things in life. And show compassion and love today not just for those who have died, but the current victims of war.

Refugee:

A refugee, generally speaking, is a displaced person who has been forced to cross national boundaries and who cannot return home safely. Such a person may be called an asylum seeker until granted refugee status by the contracting state or the UNHCR if they formally make a claim for asylum. UNHRC

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If you are curious about a first-hand fictional story of a refugee: mother and child, fleeing Syria read Lynda Filler’s  DISPLACED

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All I can say…

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Gratitude

I’m so grateful for all of you! I released Lie To Me an exposé on sex for money, a spicy novel slightly outside my comfort zone. And you loved it! My review from Readers’ Favorite validated the work. But more important, the emails I received and notes from fans made my heart sing. It’s always about the emotion for me. If I can evoke emotion or present entertainment mixed with thought-provoking content, I’ve delivered what I set out to do.

I love your constant support. YOU inspire me to continue on this amazing journey. So let me bring you up to date on what I’m working on. I’m writing the next in the series JET 5! No title yet but it will be exciting! When I write JET, I get lost in her process and her life. This is by far my most entertaining spy/action/suspense work to date and I have Russell Blake to thank for inviting me to write into his world!

I’m also working on something very close to my heart. But at the moment, I can’t share. Why? I’m uncertain how to present the life of my friend a Navy SEAL. Will I novelize it? Or will it be a memoir? Not sure yet. But I will keep you posted. There is no doubt in my mind that you will want to read it.

I also have Book 3 “in the Sun” series per/co/lat/ing… Mia’s alone as you know from VANISHED in the SUN. Carlos has been pulled back in… I can’t say more or I might spoil the series for you. And Mia finds herself on the run… Yes, exciting, thrilling and edgy because that’s how that girl rolls!

So I share with you today a wonderful visual. Take a need. I choose Courage and mix it up with Beauty and Passion while I plot my way through JET’s life. Her dedication to Hannah is the essence of all motherhood. And in her determination to keep her young daughter safe, she fights cartels, ISIS, greed, and terrorism. I believe she’s on her way to London, but shh, she doesn’t know it yet! She never disappoints.

Have an amazing holiday season! And thank you for being part of my journey.

 

Meet #RWISA Author Michelle Abbott

 

Meet Author Michelle Abbott. Her “story” blows me away!

 

The 136

 

I can do this. I can make it. Wet hair plastered to my head, gasping, I propel myself toward my target. The 136 bus. My heel catches on a crack in the pavement. My ankle twists sideways, sending a sharp pain up my leg. Wincing, I hobble towards the stop, just as the bus closes its doors and pulls away.

“Ahhh,” I scream in frustration.

“Here, use my umbrella.”

His voice startles me. I was so focused on catching the bus, I never noticed him until now. I must have had a serious case of tunnel vision, because he stands out a mile with his cornflower blue, spiky hair. He holds a large, black umbrella out to me.

Leaning against the post of the bus stop, to take the pressure off my throbbing ankle, I shake my head.

“Thank you, but you keep it. I’m already wet, and it would be a shame to ruin your hair.”

He shrugs. “It’s only hair. My umbrella is big enough for two.”

I get a sinking feeling in my stomach. Is he hitting on me? What’s wrong with the man? He looks twenty-five if he’s a day. I’m twice his age. Old enough to be his mother.

Mother.

I pick tendrils of damp hair from my forehead.

“I know what you must be thinking, but I’m just trying to do a good turn. You have nothing to fear from me, I promise.” He shelters us both with his umbrella. “You look like you’re having a bad day.”

As I listen to the rain split splat, I lean down to rub my sore ankle.

“Please let me help you.” He slips his arm through mine. “We can sit on that bench. We’ll be able to see the bus coming from there.”

With his assistance, I limp across to the empty, wooden bench that faces the road. “I just missed my bus; the next one won’t be along for an hour.” I sit down, past caring whether I get a wet spot on my skirt. “Are you waiting for a bus?”

He looks so calm, and serene.

“Yes, the 136.”

“Oh no. You didn’t miss it because of me, did you?” I frown.

“I wasn’t running for it.” He gives me a kind smile. “I have all the time in the world.”

A car drives through a puddle, splashing dirty water onto the pavement.

“I’ve got no one to rush home to either.” Maybe it’s his kind smile, maybe I just need to off load. “My husband moved out last week, left me for a woman your age.”

I hope he feels every bit his fifty-four years every second he’s with her.

“I’m sorry.”

What has it come to when I’m sitting in a downpour, telling my sob story to a stranger with blue hair? “She’s all form and no substance. If his head was turned that easily, he’s no loss.” I hold out my hand. If I’m telling the poor man my life story, the least I should do is introduce myself. “My name’s Carol.” I look into his ice blue eyes, surprised by the wisdom I see there.

“Do you have children together, Carol?”

Babies.

I stare at my feet. My heel is scuffed, and my stockings are damp. “Two daughters, they’re both grown-up.”

“Nothing beats a mother’s love for her children.” He reaches into the pocket of his long black coat, and pulls out a pack of mints. “Would you like one?”

We sit in silence, sucking on mints. The sky turns orange as the sun sets. I pull my jacket around me to keep out the chill. Behind us, a shop owner pulls down the metal security shutters of his store.

I’m curious to know more about this man, who claims he has all the time in the world. “It will be late when you get home. Do you have someone, or do you live alone?”

The street lamps come on. I watch the reflection of the light in the puddles.

“I have a loving family.”

Family.

In this moment, I feel so alone. Tears mingle with the raindrops on my cheeks. “I’m pregnant.”

The events of last week replay in my mind. Me, feeling sick every morning. Me, looking at the blue line on the pregnancy test. Me, buying a second test that gave me the same result.

“How does something like this happen to a woman my age? I’m going through the menopause; I haven’t had a period in a year. How can I be pregnant? How? Why? Why did this happen when my husband has left me?”

“What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.” He rests his hand on my shoulder.

“That was my mother’s favourite saying.” I wipe my cheeks. “She passed away five years ago.”

He hands me a tissue. “I’m certain she’s watching over you, and that you make her proud.”

“Pregnant at fifty-one.” I blow into the tissue. “I’m sure she’s delighted.” I let out a hollow laugh.

“How old were you when you had your daughters?”

“I was twenty-two when I had Patricia. Diane came along when I was twenty-five.”

“You learn as you go with your first, don’t you?”

For the first time I smile. “Yes, I was clueless. None of the classes prepare you for being a mother. You hold the life of your child in your hands. It’s so much responsibility.” I turn to face him. “Do you have children?”

He shakes his head. “I’m sure you know more about parenting now, than you did then.”

“Yes I do.”

“It’s hard when you’re young isn’t it? You’re trying to make your way up the career ladder. Struggling to save for a home.”

I nod.

“Those things get easier as you get older, don’t they?”

“Yes they do.” I’m on a good wage. I own a spacious home in a good area.

“You have more time, more understanding, and more patience.”

I nod.

“And you’re wiser. You know what really matters.”

I let out a laugh. “You make being old sound wonderful.” He really does.

He raises an eyebrow. “Isn’t it?”

I recall my childhood, how I hated having to do as I was told. How I would get upset at the smallest things. I remember my angst filled teenage years, being unhappy with my appearance. The heartbreak when the boys I thought I loved dumped me. I have a vivid memory of how stressful early parenthood was.

I study him. “You’re wise for someone so young.”

“Am I?”

The rain has stopped. He collapses his umbrella.

“Nothing is ever as bad as it seems, Carol. A child is a gift. A new start. Someone to love.”

Someone to love. A new start.

I sit up straighter. He’s right. I can do this. I have a nice home, money, and a heart full of love.

“Oh look, here’s your bus.”

Already? Have we been talking for an hour? I glance at my watch. Only twenty minutes have passed. The brakes of the bus screech as it pulls up.

As I root in my purse for my fare, I hear him say, “I’m glad I could help.”

“Let’s sit together.” I glance behind me. “I want to thank…” The words die in my throat. No one is there. I look left and right, but the street is empty. Goosebumps spread across my skin.

“Are you getting on love?” the driver calls.

 

Thank you for supporting this member along the WATCH “RWISA” WRITE Showcase Tour today!  We ask that if you have enjoyed this member’s writing, to please visit their Author Page on the RWISA site, where you can find more of their writing, along with their contact and social media links, if they’ve turned you into a fan.  WE ask that you also check out their books in the RWISA or RRBC catalogs.  Thanks, again for your support and we hope that you will follow each member along this amazing tour of talent!  Don’t forget to click the link below to learn more about this author:  Michelle Abbott