So you can read my books

Monday, June 5, 2017


Each of us is a walking shadow.

The people in our lives are lights, varying in color and brightness.  

As they pass by us, 

our shadows move and change with each light, becoming something different with each one.

We become a living dance of light and shadow with the people entering our lives ...

and leaving them.

Whenever someone who knows you dies, you lose one version of yourself.  

Yourself as you were seen, as you were judged to be.

They construct us in a way and their different versions shape us, 

slanting our character like diamond cutter's tools.

A death of such an important light is a step leading to our own graves where all versions end and blend.

But some people are not just 
lights in your life 
but a star in your sky 
to guide your steps by.

Sandra Thrasher has just entered a hospice ...

but she has not left my life or stopped shaping it ... not even her death will do that.

“If you could only sense how important you are to the lives of those you meet; how important you can be to the people you may never even dream of. 

There is something of yourself that you leave at every meeting with another person.” 

Fred Rogers

Sandra did not set out to become the sister I never had ...

She was just her wise and wise-cracking self.  

(Think Bette Midler with salt and pepper hair)

She believed I could be better than I felt I could ... 

and applied a verbal kick-in-the-pants to assist me in that effort often.

When my mother died, she comforted me.  

And when her mother died soon after, I returned the favor.

When my house burned, and I was burned, Sandra called me each day, 

being supportive when my dog died as I lay healing from my burns ...

 when my rescue dog was poisoned in the yard where I was forced to keep him. 

Sandra gave me a car to see that I could go back to work.  

She let me know that she felt I was worth the effort of her friendship.

Sandra is the only self-actualized person 
I have ever met.

1.) She prodded me into not embracing the familiar but walking into the unknown, for that realm contains the only treasures worth finding.

2.) Sandra accepted herself with all her flaws and encouraged me to do the same. 

3.) She urged me to set a firm destination but to enjoy the journey getting there.

4.)  Sandra is unconventional, not for the shock value, 

but to be authentic to her worldview that the world is basically insane and troubled

so laugh at it when you can

and  heal from it without bitterness when you could.

5.)  Sandra tried to teach me that life is not about needs but about growth, for without growth we die inside.

6.)  She illustrated with her life that life is about being grateful for the very fact of our being 

and to treat small set-backs as the tuition of living.

7.)  Sandra possesses a code of ethics that is individualized and not dictated by the society around her.  

It is a lifestyle I try to adopt for my own.

Why Am I Writing This For My IWSG post?

Life is more fragile than we let ourselves see.

Life is shorter than we would wish 

and not as predictable as our denial defense mechanism murmurs to us that it is.

I would have you take a moment to appreciate the special people in your life 

in the midst of your struggles towards your writing dreams.

Like iridescent rainbows, they will disappear sooner than you wish.

{Sandra slipped away Tuesday evening,
and her passing is 
an open wound in my heart.}


  1. Sandra sounds like a wonderful person. You are probably just as much a star in her life as she's been in yours.

    1. I hope so and not a thorn in her side. I can hope to aspire to be as healing to others around me -- while making them laugh. :-)

  2. Hi Roland - what a lovely post to Sandra who means so much to you ... and yes we can all learn from those who will help and give of themselves - cheers Hilary

    1. Sadly, the lessons taught us by those unwise and cruel to us are not so fondly remembered.

      Thank you for always being my friend, Hilary. :-)

  3. She sounds really incredible. It sounds like you're both very lucky to have had each other.

    1. Thanks, David. 2017 is proving a grim year for so many.

  4. Every person we pass could be someone who has an impact on us and vice versa if we reach out.

  5. You are truly blessed to have had someone who was the wind beneath your wings.

  6. Oh, Roland....

    I am SOOOOO sorry to hear about Sandra. I feel as though I know her from all the years we've know each other, Sandra has been there. Her battle is truly heroic....

    After losing Melissa Bradly last month, I feel for you. I know and completely understand your words.... Melissa fought to the end. Sadly I never got to see her before she left. But she is now in such a better place, pain free. Her spirit is ALIVE and thriving ... free from the shackles of pain and cancer. She is ALIVE in our hearts. As Sandra is and will be the she is free...

    Sending you a huge hug....Take care, my friend...

    1. Yes, Melissa's passing was a wound to all of us who knew her.

      The warm-hearted cinema commentator did a tribute to Melissa from her sister at the end of her Wonder Woman review. It is at the end -- you should see it.

  7. It's true, we never know how many moments remain. Thank you for the insightful thoughts, and I'm sending love an calming cheese your way. Here's to the great people in our lives, and how they forever change us!

    1. Thanks so much, Crystal, for the warm, loving thoughts. :-)

  8. What a heartfelt post for Sandra. The song also means something to me. Thank you for the reminder Roland.

    1. And thank you, Erika, for such a caring comment. :-)

  9. We do forget how precious those in our lives really are. I don't know Sandra, but you've made her a part of my life with your post. I'll be thinking of her and remembering how we're all diminished by the loss of people we love or admire.

    1. Admire and love. Sandra was the older sister I never had. Thanks for being here for me. :-)

  10. This is a hard hitting post as I lost my big brother three weeks ago. It was sudden, instant, final.

    I'm happy for your friendship with Sandra. We all need a Sandra in our lives.

    1. I am so grieved about the loss of your brother. We just never know, do we?

  11. What a lovely tribute. Thanks for sharing.
    @mirymom1 from
    Balancing Act

  12. Oh Roland, my heart breaks for you. I'm so sorry you're losing such an amazing friend. How many people would be so giving and selfless, let alone inspiring?

    Thanks for the words of advice. In the end, it's not how much we write that matters. It's how much we loved, and were loved.

    Hugs. Sending you all my love and strength during this difficult time.

    1. J. H. - thank you for such nice words and caring. :-)

  13. I really like the Fred Rogers quote. I think we forget the potential of our own impact. It also reminded me to check the quote in my planner for the week (Passion Planner is awesome!) and I'm newly inspired again!

    Here's my IWSG post for June: How to Survive the 'Little Quits.'

    1. Thank you, Stephsco. We impact when we think we do not often. :-)

  14. I'm glad you've had someone like Sandra in your life. Good reminder to value those who support us. Hugs out to you.

    1. We take so many precious things and people in our lives too often. Thanks for caring, Shannon

  15. So sorry for your loss. She sounds like an amazing person who brought tremendous joy and comfort to those around her.

  16. Roland, I'm so sorry for your loss, but at the same time I'm glad that you had Sandra in your life for a time. She sounds like she brought tremendous joy and growth to your life and we all need individuals like that. Praying for comfort and hope to radiate through all that you're going through right now.

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