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Saturday, November 26, 2016
A small tribute from Tricia McGill
There are times in every writer’s life when their Muse will not play fair, when the page remains blank far too long, when the ideas do not spring to mind, and the enthusiasm to do what has always come easily fades. This has been one of those periods in my life.
I have wracked my brain for something to fill the page but nothing will come. It is not a case of writer’s block. I’ve had that before, more than a few times, and have always overcome it by simply writing any old thing that pops into my head, and before I know it, a page is filled.
No, this is far more serious. I’ve always said that life is a series of pathways, and we choose which path to take on our journey, but when Fate plays a nasty hand in things and we do not have a choice or say in the matter, then it becomes disastrous.
I have been fortunate in that I had a happy childhood raised within a family who always saw the funny side of life and despite not having the luxuries of life always remained positive. My parents were good, honest people who strove to do the best for their large family. I married a hard-working, kind man who loved me enough to let me do whatever I wanted. A man who helped me through many difficult situations, and provided me with all the encouragement needed when I chose to follow my dream of becoming a writer.
A few years ago I encouraged one of my sisters to write her life story. If I live long enough I will edit and finish it for her, as although she tells of her many trials and tribulations in the pages she penned, she in no way told the complete story. Currently this beloved sister is very sick, hence the blockage in my brain. She is not afraid of leaving us, in fact in the last weeks has prayed to go more than a few times rather than spend more days unable to continue in the way she wants to. But I am afraid of losing my lifelong friend who has been the best sister I could ever wish for. I have faced grief a lot of times in my life and perhaps time does heal. I think perhaps this is only half true as a tiny part of it remains with us forever, but should never be dwelt on, just touched now and then when memories invade the day to day activities. But then again what is life but a series of memories.
Anyway, to get back to my sister’s story. She has suffered more than any one person should but has always overcome her many health issues stoically. In fact she has concealed the true extent of her childhood health problems so well that most who know her have no idea of the suffering endured throughout her life.
I re-read her story last week and this is how she ended it (she wrote this in 2009).
“There are a few regrets. I wish my Mother had lived to see me able to drive a car, I think she would have loved to have sat beside me. I also wished she had been able to see what my sister Pat has achieved with her writing. I wish she had heard me play my music, and to have seen my paintings, I think she would have been very proud of us. This has been my life up to now. There have been a lot of tears, but mostly laughter. I have always tried to be nice to people. I have always tried to be kind. Most of all, I always try to smile. I have a beautiful family, and some lovely friends. You can’t ask for more than that.”
And that says it all—if only everyone could live by those words. Just be nice to people, that’s really what it is all about.