Hello campbellsworld visitors.
We continue WordPress Wednesday with this delightfully funny but realistic story from author proofreader Jo E. Pinto.
Please be sure to keep reading once you’ve enjoyed her offering to learn about Jo’s wonderful book THE BRIGHT SIDE OF DARKNESS.
Thanks for visiting, and do drop back by again soon. You just can never tell what you might find.
by J. E. Pinto
While chatting with a blind friend just now, I finally understood an aspect of myself I should have figured out more than thirty years ago, when I was still in my teens. The revelation hit me like a fist between the eyes.
I’ve never been a particularly spontaneous person, to say the least. If we’re going to be honest, I’ve driven my friends and family out of their collective minds over the years because of my often maddening attention to detail. In my defense, that attention to detail has also saved some of their collective butts at times, but those stories are best left for long evenings of tipsy reminiscing or moments when mild blackmail becomes necessary.
The point that struck me during my recent conversation is that spontaneity is a valued personality trait in the general population. But for people with disabilities, especially those of us not blessed with easy transportation options, it’s a luxury, a privilege, an outlook that’s risky and often just plain too exhausting to cultivate.
As a teenager, I used to giggle about women who hauled around handbags that resembled suitcases. You know, the kind that made them totter precariously to one side as they walked, the kind that doubled as deadly weapons when swung at muggers or stray dogs in a pinch. Now I carry what I call my “Mary Poppins purse.” I’ve learned as a blind traveler that, especially with a child tagging along, I may not always be able to get what I need on the go. So I tend to bring everything that might come in handy for the day when I leave the house. Need a lamp, a measuring tape, or a hat stand? I just might pull one out of my oversized purse when it’s called for.
I’m a hopeless planner. When I returned to college in my early thirties, working part-time and taking a full course load, I sat down at the beginning of every semester with all of my class schedules. Breaking each schedule down week by week, I figured out in meticulous detail which reading and writing assignments I needed to complete every weekend so I wouldn’t fall behind at any point. Later when my daughter started elementary school, I did my best to keep her on a similar schedule. She lacked my regimented personality and resisted my organizational efforts with every ounce of her free-wheeling spirit.
I’m a stickler when it comes to putting groceries and dishes in the same places on my kitchen shelves. Otherwise, my family might end up eating spaghetti flavored with applesauce–yes, it happened once. Nobody died.
I try very hard not to forget things at the grocery store during shopping trips because it’s difficult for me to know when I’ll make it back to purchase the missing items. At the end of a stressful day recently, after dropping well over two hundred dollars at Target and arriving home to find we had forgotten toothpaste, I didn’t know whether to curse or cry.
“It’s just toothpaste,” my husband said. “I’ll get some over the weekend.”
“I know.” I sighed. “But I hate loose ends.”
“God … it’s just toothpaste,” he repeated. “Stop kibbitzing.”
That’s the thing. I’m on guard, a lot. There’s always something to keep tabs on. Have I gotten all of my printed items read to me while a sighted person is on hand, since I don’t know when the next reader will come around? Do I have all of my errands planned on the same day when somebody will be able to drive for me? Have I remembered everything on my shopping list so I won’t have to return to the store?
Now who said I was supposed to be spontaneous? Oh, right–I’ll try to fit that in. Maybe I’ll have time … at two-thirty next Tuesday afternoon.
About J. E. Pinto
J. E. Pinto is a magnet for underdogs! Early in her married life, her home became a hangout for troubled neighborhood kids. This experience lit the flame
for her first novel, The Bright Side of Darkness.
Pinto’s Spanish-American roots grow deep in the Rocky Mountains, dating back six generations. J. E. Pinto lives with her family in Colorado where she works
as a writer and also proofreads textbooks and audio books. One of her favorite pastimes is taking a nature walk with her service dog.
The Bright Side of Darkness won a first place Indie Book Award for “First Novel over Eighty Thousand Words,” as well as First Place for “Inspirational
Fiction.” The novel also won several awards from the Colorado Independent Publishers Association: First Place for “Inspirational Fiction,” Second Place
for “Audio Book,” and First Place for “Literary and Contemporary Fiction.”
What is a family? Rick Myers is a despondent seventeen-year-old who just lost his parents in a car wreck. His family is now the four teenage buddies he’s
grown up with in a run-down apartment building. Fast with their fists, flip with their mouths, and loyal to a fault, “the crew” is all he has.
At least he thinks so until he meets Daisy, an intelligent, independent, self-assured blind girl. Her guts in a world where she’s often painfully vulnerable
intrigue Rick, and her hopeful outlook inspires him to begin believing in himself.
But when the dark side of Daisy’s past catches up with her, tragedy scatters the crew and severely tests Rick’s resolve to build his promising future.
Fortunately, his life is changed by a couple with a pay-it-forward attitude, forged out of their personal struggle with grief and loss. Their support makes
all the difference to Rick and eventually to the ones he holds most dear as they face their own challenges.
“The Bright Side of Darkness” is a story of redemption and the ultimate victory that comes from the determination of the human spirit.
For more details and to buy the book please visit: http://www.amazon.com/author/jepinto