Journey

Everybody has a book in them, or so it's said. But it's something else again getting it onto the page and to a place where it might be shared.

I have been writing since I was a child. Always, my dream was to see my name on the spine of a book. Books gave me life, a dream to live by. Through their portals I could escape easily into other worlds. Books also saved my life ... yes, really!

This is the story of my books and my journey as an author. I hope it will inspire and give hope to writers young and old.

Getting published can be a waiting game. It's hard .. and it's getting harder. But then sometimes it happens in unexpected ways and suddenly, we are living the dream. And we realise that it isn't after all the winning that is important so much as the journey along the way.

I would love to hear from anyone who connects with what is written here. A signed copy of any of my books is available. You have only to write and ask:

janineharrington53@gmail.com







Sunday, 10 January 2016

THE UNINVITED GUEST



Hello World,

Have you ever had one of those moments when you feel you're not alone?

No, I'm not talking here about conspiracy theories or the Spirit World .. although there are plenty of those tales I could share. But have you ever lived a moment with a companion or partner, male or female it works both ways; and you're animatedly talking, sharing something you feel passionately about when ...

... a sharp ringing or catch-tune interrupts the moment.

You pause. Take a breath. It's happened too many times before for you not to know what follows.

It becomes a persistent buzz or hum, snagging your words, drawing the attention of the one you are speaking to away.

Despite the animated conversation, the mobile is picked up, looked at or placed to the ear. The focus shifts. You are dis-engaged. The moment is lost. Someone else is now right there with you both in the room, coming between you.

You too know that experience ... don't you?

It can happen any place, any time. You see it in restaurants and cafes where one partner sits gazing off into space, while the other is besotted with the phone, unable to simply switch it off, put it down, and give his companion the undivided attention they deserve and which would be welcome.

People lose the art of conversation.

They say children's thumbs are growing longer due to all the texting they do, and on reaching home after school, the house grows silent and still ... not because they are engrossed in homework, but because a machine has taken their attention away from their immediate surroundings, invading their home.

It becomes the uninvited guest.

Rules of etiquette fail to kick in. We become used to it. The distracting sound of a mobile becomes a part of everyday life. Like a crying baby to a mother, its needs to take priority.

Why?

On the other end of the phone someone is jostling for attention. They demand to be heard. A hand reaches towards the incessant sound, slides the bar, looks or listens, rapidly punches in keys, or puts the phone to an ear. A conversation is now taking place you are not privy to. Now you must wait until it is finished. Or else it can be that the mobile is put down after a cursory glance, with the words: 'Crap text'.

But is it?

How can you know?

How much do you actually trust the person you are with, especially when they interrupt a conversation or an activity shared, divert to read the message or take a call regardless of the fact you are there, air-brushing the moment you had between you?

That moment rarely comes again.

Another way it happens is when you're reading in bed. The hour is late. You're waiting for your partner/husband to join you. He's still working on his computer in the other room. Two hours on you step quietly across the landing. He sits staring at the screen. It's out of range for you to properly know what's going on ... but as you approach from behind, fingers tap keys, letters or images on the screen vanish as they are scrolled to the toolbar below.

'I'm coming .. I'm coming .. give me a moment!'

It's that moment again, this time tinged with a touch of frustration, impatience, as if you're somehow trespassing on his domain.

Again, you are no longer alone, just the two of you. Someone else is sharing your home, your time, your intimacy, invading your space, building a barrier between you. You can stand and wait, and he'll wait with you until finally you step back out of the room, back into the bedroom, into the bed, to wait some more.

Beginnings and endings. Endings and beginnings. Given time, trust takes a hammering ... and you begin to wonder. The more it happens, the more doubt creeps in. You can't help it. It happens, even before you realise it's actually happening to you. But then again, you tell yourself not to be so stupid. You begin to believe what he says, that you're paranoid. 'It's you ... you're reading too much into it.' After all, this is someone you love. Someone you love so much you have no secrets. You have given yourself to him, all of your self, everything you have to give and then some, holding nothing back, believing this is your 'happy-ever-after' and he's right there with you for the rest of your life.

But then, you forget ... this is your concept of Love.

It might not be his?

In a past moment, he slips in the phrase: 'Maybe you're not asking the right questions!' Again, you wonder. But then, what is it I'm supposed to ask? What is it I don't know? The phrase sends out signals which somehow trigger impulses in the brain. They niggle and wriggle at the back of what you share, how you manage your time together ... especially if he works away from home.

At the start of a New Year, I look back and know this is where it began.

For Me.

I have no idea exactly when it started, even how far back it goes. But this is the journey he put me on, and which I travel now. Where will it take me? I've no idea. All I do know is that he remains locked into my Present, as do I his; even though in reality he's not with me any more. His choice. The phone when it buzzed or rang when we were together didn't simply mean 'crap text'. It meant in truth an 'Uninvited Guest' really was there between us. He carried a vision of her with him when they weren't together, knowing she would make contact, expecting it to happen, ready to blot me out in an instant.

Now the situation is reversed ...

I have become the 'crap text', the call not answered, the email that sits waiting for 'the right time'. When she isn't expecting him home, or he's at work, or she's reading a book in bed waiting for him to join her; when she isn't around him and he has his moment alone to speak or text the words he might or might not say ... that 'right time' may come. Or not. I hardly hear from him any more. I'm just the 'dumped wife'. The Reject. Second-Hand Rose. Done with. Forgotten. Abandoned.

But I cannot be erased.

Our relationship happened. Check! We married. Check! We have unfinished business. Check! And I love him. Check! So I am now between them.

The Uninvited Guest.



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