My new doctor interrupted me just as tears began gathering in my eyes.
“Good timing,” I told her, stifling sniffles. “I was just about to get to a really sad part of this book, The End of Your Life Book Club.” I gave her a brief synopsis of the non-fiction book, in which a son writes about the informal book club he and his mom shared during the last two years of her life.
“Hmm,” she replied, before asking how I was doing.
Twenty minutes later, I thanked her profusely. “I just can’t tell you how thankful I am for you. I mean, where would I start?”
She smiled. “I’m in this line of work because I want to help heal people.”
I thought of our meeting as I trekked out to my car, but I was too ravenous to think very clearly. I downed some much needed protein and iron in a Del Taco parking lot before beginning my forty-minute drive back home. I flipped on the radio and was immediately catapulted back in time by the opening notes of a beloved song. Read more…
When I moved back to L.A. three years ago, I made three compilation CDs to keep me awake through the 16-hour drive. In a rush of originality, I labeled these discs Driving Disc #1, Driving Disc #2, and Driving Disc #3.
Since then, I’ve bought a lot more music, which has led me to make four more driving discs. (OK, I’ve made five, but one was produced in the throes of pregnancy-related hormone fits, and was so utterly unlistenable I tossed the disc and tried vanquishing it from memory. Shh.) I won’t tell you how they’re labeled, but I’m sure you’ll put that puzzle together all by yourself.
This morning, I made it to the end of the fifth disc. The first strains of Jordin Sparks’s “Tattoo” filled my car and–I hate to admit this–I got goosebumps.
Also from the hate-to-admit it files? I probably listened to that song a couple hundred times while I was editing The Monster’s Daughter.
Listening to the song this morning, I was overwhelmed by elation. Since I last listened to it, I moved from halfheartedly editing to actually releasing the book. Sure, there’s still a little work being done behind the scenes, but mostly? I did it. That satisfaction, one I couldn’t feel when I listened to “Tattoo” ceaselessly before, is one I’ll surely wear on my heart like a tattoo for years to come.
Heh. I know, I know. Cheesy, right? But no matter how cheesy it may be, the heart of The Monster’s Daughter is captured in these lyrics:
Don’t look back, got a new direction
Loved you once, needed protection
You’re still a part of everything I do
You’re on my heart just like a tattoo
Just like a tattoo, I’ll always have you