Thursday, September 10, 2015

Do Fragrances or Music Trigger Special Memories for You?

Walking through the meadow, I could smell the wild lilies.  This was remarkable considering I know little to nothing about gardening and flowers.  But I do recognize the difference between a rose and a lily (most of the time). Fragrance always triggers memories for me as much as hearing a song from the past.  Especially Rock from the 60s and 70s like the ones played in What memories are triggered when you hear these songs?  

Today was a day of reflections and my walk in the quiet country was what this Type A gal needed. The potent smell of lillies took me back to the most beautiful wedding I ever witnessed - my daughter's.  

As mothers everywhere, we hope and certainly pray that our children will make us proud, and I am no exception. What surprised and blessed me was how incredible my daughter turned out. 

Watching her grow up and mature into a beautiful woman and mother, I am awed by her wisdom and trust I had a little something to do with that.  As a mom, you will relate to my heart-warming letter in Dear Daughter, Why Did You Turn Out this Way?

Continuing my walk I reflected on my life and the major turn it has taken these past few months.  For years, I was a charter member of the club for people who had low self-esteem or poor self-image yet could hide it well.  So well, in fact, no one ever guessed what had happened in my life, tainted by abuse,
trauma and almost unbeatable odds.  But recently my book and radio show, Never Ever Give Up Hope, has been discovered by a prestigious woman's magazine, Focus on Women and I will be honored at a formal gala affair next month in Washington D C.  

Writing my memoir, Battered Hope, started me on a path of recovery I never expected and a review I received last week sums it up remarkably well.
Battered Hope is a perfect title for this story of triumph over multiple and unrelenting obstacles faced by a woman and her husband. I am not going to summarize the plot as that is found in the synopsis. Rather, I want to focus this review on my response as a reader. At first glance, the onslaught of misfortune seemed unbelievable except for the author’s ability to present her story in an honest, vivid way, even adding humor at times to provide some relief from the tension. She does not sugarcoat her experiences or her responses to them nor does she blame others for the chaos in her life. I found that refreshing as a reader and it helped me to trust her and root for her as the narrator of this story.
Her ability to build tension and keep her story moving forward is a credit to her tenacious spirit and strong faith as well as to her storytelling skills. I actually read this memoir twice because it felt overwhelming that despite enduring so much for so long, she was still able to share the lessons of her trials so effectively. I wanted to give this story a second chance because I sensed an underlying strength and resilience in her character that made me want to understand both her and her story’s main message more clearly. 
So many people will relate to this story. We all have burdens and challenges in our lives, many of which we do overcome. To take that extra step, as Carol has, to share the rawness and pain and to show at so many junctures how her faith in God pulled her through, gives us all the gift of hope. For non-Christians, she does not preach, but rather she shows through her faith how her hope for a better life was nourished.
I recommend this memoir without reservation to anyone who has encountered life’s challenges and needs to find a source of hope that their life will be better too.

I am genuinely touched by each review and even more so when someone tells me how Battered Hope was an inspiration to them.

This post is a blogging challenge where participating bloggers are given words to use in a story. When The Bergham's Life Chronicles  gave me the words to use I was baffled.  I didn't have a clue so just wrote the first sentence and then let my fingers do the walking.  This is where I ended up and all I have to say in conclusion is this:


And the final word was "pacifist" which I couldn't make fit -- but there.....I used it anyway!

My words were:  lilies ~ meadow ~ tainted ~ genuine ~ roar ~ pacifist

I hope you have a look at the other creative and amazing bloggers to see how they were challenged in Use Your Words

Photo courtesy of



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