Patty Lyne Fletcher in her own words (February 2015)
About me and my crew
I’m a 46-year-old single mother with a beautiful daughter, of whom I am very proud. I have a great son-in-law and four beautiful grandchildren. They range from one year to eight years of age: two girls and two boys. I hope to be able to write more about them later on.
I own and handle a Black Labrador from The Seeing Eye™ named Campbell Lee—a.k.a. Bubba Lee or King Campbell, to give just a couple of his nicknames. I also have a 15-year-old cat named Celine Kitty and a tom named Kitty Bob.
When and where I was born
I was born on November 9, 1967 in Kingsport, Tenn., where I also grew up.
About my blindness
I was born one and a half months premature. My blindness was caused by my being given too much oxygen in the incubator. I was partially sighted until 1991, at which time I lost my sight due to an infection after cataract surgery and high eye pressure. I used a cane for 31 years before making the change to a guide dog.
Where I live and work
Currently, I live and work in Kingsport, Tenn.
I used to work for CONTACT-CONCERN of Northeast Tennessee, Inc. I left that position in order to spend time with family and pursue my writing full time.
Why I wrote this book
I wrote this book to tell the story of how going to The Seeing Eye™ and getting Campbell, learning to love, handle, and work him, then coming home and adding him to my life, gave me true freedom.
I tell of how changing from being a 31-year cane user to being a guide dog handler taught me things about myself I had never known before. I tell of the wonderment I experienced when I finally took that chance.
A major goal of mine is to help others who find themselves in domestic violence situations. I also want to help others learn more about mental illnesses and how different situations and environments can drastically affect those with such challenges.
I also tell how training affected me physically as a result of the fibromyalgia I deal with, along with the side effects of the medications I take.
I focus on bipolar disorder, on how it can go horribly wrong and cause a person to behave in ways they normally would not. Then I show how hurtful it can be when a person is completely rejected, made to feel as if they have been tossed out with the trash, when they become sick as a result of mental illness.
Another thing I have attempted to show is how, in certain institutional settings, attachments can develop—and how those attachments can become unhealthy for all concerned if they are not handled correctly.
Most simply, I want others to know more about me.
My e-zine column
To see my new e-zine column, “Campbell’s Calamities,” go to:http://rgqonline.com/
My hobbies include reading, writing, music, and standup comedy. I also like nature walks, light hiking, tent camping, and fishing. No, I am not afraid to bait a hook.
Music I enjoy
My favorite types of music are classic rock, rhythm and blues, and classic country, as well as some present-day country music. I also like meditation music.
My favorite books and authors
I enjoy fantasy, science fiction, and books about the supernatural. I love the books by Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and many more. My favorite books include Stephen King’s Dark Tower series, J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series, and J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series.
My spiritual faith
I am a spiritual walker. I claim no particular faith, either Christian or pagan. I simply know that there is God and Goddess, or Mother Father God, as some call her/him. I lean toward the natural approach, or Druidism (Druidry), as it promotes harmony and respect for all beings, including the environment. I am also very interested in herbs and their healing properties. I recently enrolled in a course that will allow me to earn a certificate in the field of working with herbs