Ripples In Time

dreamstimefree_2868839Back in high school, I had a crush on a guy. He was cute and funny and a year older than I was. He also had a girlfriend who went to a different school, which meant that as long as she was in the picture, he was off limits.

But I liked this guy and we became friends. Sure, there was some flirting. Mostly we hung around outside of classes and he let me store my books in his locker because my locker was way down at the other end of the school.

Storing my books in his locker was a great way to ensure I would constantly run into him between classes. It was a brilliant plan, one of the best catch-a-guy plans I ever devised. Unfortunately, he still had a girlfriend.

During those first two months of the school year, our friendship blossomed. In late October, with the Sadie Hawkins dance approaching – you know the one where the girl gets to ask the guy to the dance? – I wanted to ask him to be my date. But at fifteen, my experience with dating was minimal. Mostly the guys I had crushes on just wanted to be friends and the guys who had crushes on me … well, I just wanted to be their friend.

I kept hearing that he was still with this other girl, and even though I was pretty sure it was all over between them – all but the final “we’re done” – I kept finding excuses not to ask him to the dance. If you want to know the truth, I was chicken.  I was scared of rejection and scared of looking like a fool and scared of losing his friendship.

I lost it anyway.

Deep down, I knew my locker guy liked me, a lot, and was waiting for me to ask him to the dance. Perhaps if he’d broken up with his other girlfriend, I might have been braver. Perhaps if my friends weren’t pressuring me to ask their boyfriends’ buddy to the dance instead, I might have gathered up my courage and made my move.

Instead, I asked the other guy, and the budding relationship between me and my locker guy disintegrated until I finally gave up hope and moved back to my own locker. Other than the occasional nod as we passed in the hallway, he spent the rest of high school ignoring me.

Fortunately, I was young and my heart was resilient. But was his?

He came to the dance alone, and I’m sure he expected me to be solo, too. Immediately after the dance, he changed. Even back then, I wondered if it was my fault. He dropped his girlfriend and began to hang around with a crowd of kids heavy into booze and drugs, and from what I could tell, spent most of his days high or drunk. Years later, I ran into him and we had a polite conversation. He’d never married, lived alone, and worked as an electrician in the oilfield industry.

Shortly afterward, I saw his obituary in the paper. He’d died, either from the drugs or alcohol, or a combination of the two. I still think of him sometimes and wonder if his life would’ve been different if I’d been brave enough to ask him to the Sadie Hawkins dance. Or if his life was predestined to end up as it did and had I dated him, would I have been caught up in the murky mess of his life?

Do you ever look back and wonder if your actions could’ve made a difference in someone’s life? Or do you think we’re predestined to live our life a certain way?

Originally published on Women Unplugged.

Welcome to the Warm Winter Reads Beach Book Blast!

This weekend, join the WG2E Beach Book Blast authors as we celebrate our warm winter reads. There are books and prizes … and did I mention books? Here on my blog, I’m giving away an ebook copy of my latest release THE VALENTINE GRINCH.

The Valentine GrinchGo read the first chapter of The Valentine Grinch, then come back here and answer the question below. The first person who posts the correct answer in the comments wins!

When Amanda Goodwin first sees her dad, what is in the yellow can that her dad is holding in his hand?

And there’s more. 🙂

To help you fill your e-reader, we’re offering a $50 Best Buy gift card as our Grand Prize, along with a $25  gift card of the winner’s choice (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or iTunes). That’s a $75 prize!

Second prize is a $25 gift card from Amazon. All you need to do is enter the Rafflecopter drawing on the Beach Book Blast website and follower the directions.

Wait, there’s more! Many of the Beach Book Blast authors are offering prizes on their websites, like I am. So click on the links below or go to the Beach Book Blast website and click on the links to the other sites to see what terrific prizes they’re offering.

While you’re here, sign up for my newsletter updates and blog posts, and join me on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Have fun at the Beach Book Blast Warm Winter Reads event. And good luck! I hope YOU win the grand prize!

 

Channeling Jekyll and Hyde

My dad was a social butterfly. He liked to get out, visit with people, and have a good time.

My mom is more the hermit type. Content with her own company, she’d happily stay in her house and yard for weeks on end.

I inherited both those qualities from my parents in equal amounts, so I’m half social butterfly, half hermit. Jekyll and Hyde, with the two entities battling for domination. On the one hand, I could bury my head in my work and never come out. But when I look up and remember there’s another world out there, I want to stay and play for hours and forget about all things work related.The Valentine Grinch by Sheila Seabrook

In December, I hid in my office and ignored everything and everyone while I finished the final rewrites and edits on the expanded edition of The Valentine Grinch. It was the most work I had accomplished in months. The time away from all things social helped me realize how very little I get done when I slip into butterfly mode.

Being in hermit mode during the month of December helped me realize two things:

1. To accomplish anything, I need be in hermit mode every day from 8:00 till 12:00 noon – longer if the work-in-progress is going well.

2. But sometimes the hermit needs to get out and play.

I’ve always been like this. All the years I worked outside of the home, I was either surrounded by people, helping where I was needed, offering to take the load off their shoulders…anything to be in the middle of other people and their madness. Or I’d hide in my office and work, never stopping for a coffee or lunch break to socialize with others.

There was rarely a middle ground because I was born an all or nothing type of girl.

As I start this New Year and search for ways to improve and reach my objectives, I ask myself, where is the balance? I know it’s within reach and so I’m making more of an effort to stay offline until the work is done, and only afterward can I play nicely with others. J

How about you? Have you found balance in your life between your goals and your fun time? How do you manage? Any tips to share or are you still seeking a solutions, too?

Originally published at Women Unplugged.

 

Celebrating the New Year with a Giveaway!

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you did something special last night to welcome in 2013. I certainly did. At midnight, I kissed my favorite guy. 🙂

And now I’m celebrating the first few days of 2013 with a giveaway. For the next five days — Jan 1 to Jan 5 — WEDDING FEVER is free on Amazon.com. Please, tell all of your friends, and have all of your friends tell all of their friends, and etc, etc.

Liz Templeton, Bandit Creek’s star reporter, is about to have her life turned upside down.

When her ex-husband, Mitch Parker, returns to town to hunt for the legendary Lost Lake treasure, her mother and former mother-in-law are determined to reunite the estranged couple. While Liz dodges their attempts, she must also deal with the ghost of her teenage daughter, Naomi, who is obsessed with discovering whether or not Mitch is her father.

Liz has one chance to stop her family from driving her insane … and falling head over heels in love with her ex isn’t part of the plan.

2013 promises to be a busy year. I have some special things planned and I’ll announce them as I get them up and running. But first and foremost, I have books to write.

How about you? What is the number one item you hope to accomplish this year?

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