: to believe
I don't even know which day of the 21 Day Publishing Challenge today is (Day 11? Day 12?)! I think the deadline is one week from Wednesday, though I'm hoping that I've miscalculated and that the cutoff is really one week from Friday (but that couldn't be, for Friday we're having a big dinner party ...and I would have never put that much pressure on things. No, not I)!
We won't talk too much about the Behind the Scenes of this farcical speed-publishing venture, one designed, in part, to take my mind off my forehead (7 weeks since the operation and my wound is still "healing". I had to stop using the super cool silicone patch when an infection broke out... then came the mad science: the daily dousing with betadine... then switching to mercurochrome (gaahh! mercury! what was I thinking?)... finally, I got desperate and broke out the LOURDES WATER! (I found a few kitchy souvenir bottles—little plastic containers in the form of the famous Saint Bernadette.)
Yesterday, as I lay back on my pillow, a soaking wet compress on my head, I felt so much frustration and desperation. I tried to relax as the "miracle" water trickled down the sides of my head, onto the pillow. I realized I had just put my faith into a 14-year-old saint!
Along with the curative water, tears flowed. For weeks, they had been bottled up, just like the souvenir "saint" water that friends had brought me from the famous grotto.
Then came the doubt. More than the water's medicinal effect, I began to question my own ability to tenir, or to hang in there. I didn't know whether to scream or to go on softly crying about the absurdity of my situation: in effect, I was counting on a purported apparition (of the Blessed Virgin, in the grotto) to help in the disappearance (of my bleeding wound). I felt as confused as ever.
And then I had an inspiration....
"Either you believe," I challenged myself, "or you don't believe!"
A minute passed in which I waited for I knew not what....
The make-up-your-mind-moment ended when my eyes squeezed shut as I raised my hand and tilted that bottle of holy water. There I received the downpouring of faith.
Update: tomorrow I will see a good dermatologist. I do believe she will be able to pick up where the saint left off. In the meantime, I'm going to keep my mind constructively occupied with the editing of the following stories! So please get out your red pens now and read the following stories, letting me know whether any typos need to be fixed. Thank you, mille fois merci!
The following stories will go into the manuscript template by tomorrow (Tuesday night)! Please send any edits today, or tomorrow morning at the latest. Thanks!
PETITE AMIE: my future husband's ex shows up at our wedding!
LOUPER: I allow my son a "ditch day"
COQUILLE: When I am old...
CONDUIRE: Learning to drive in France
Meantime, here is a sneak peek at the book covers (Big thanks designer Tamara Dever at TLC Graphics & Narrow Gate Books!) . Get ready to vote on Friday (I hope...)
Click to view a larger image. Note: the subtitle you see will not appear (nor will the subtitle I made up this weekend: Blossoming in Provence: A Tumbleweed's enlightenment among the Lavender. Mom thinks the title will stand on its own. What do you think? Let me know here, in the comments box.
A special note to all editors (that might be you!): If you are helping to edit my forthcoming "memoirette", Blossoming in Provence, please click over to the Acknowledgment page, now, and enter your name in the comments box there!
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