Many of the essays and poems/lyrics that I have shared in Snippets are from the past and have come from an unpublished manuscript I wrote when my children were younger called “Pink Balloons.”  Who knows one day I may get lucky and get it published!  Of course, that would mean sending it out numerous times to publishers and having to face rejections!  I have never sent this manuscript out but I did try with one of my children’s stories called “Tilly the Churchyard Cat.”  I came close on that one, had a small press interested and they kept me hanging for nine months while I worked on the illustrations but in the end they didn’t offer me a contract.  I was so disappointed that it took me YEARS to work up the gumption to try again.  I wish I could say I have been consistent and persistent but I have not.  I am working on the issue though and that is progress!  

“Pink Balloons” came to me as the title for my collection of essays, anecdotes, and poems following an experience my daughter and I shared in our backyard with a pink balloon when she was three years old.  It was a rather mundane incident where her pink balloon escaped her hands and floated away into the sky, leaving her heartbroken.  She cried inconsolably and insisted I go get her ”boon.”  I couldn’t use logic on her as to how it was physically impossible for me to fly up into the sky to get her “boon.”  Something so simple made her very happy and just as quickly it was gone, making her very sad.  I wrote about this and how after that pink balloons became metaphors of joy to me.  Following my brother’s unexpected death earlier that year at the age of thirty-seven, I also wrote about the grief and sadness we feel when a pink balloon (loved one) leaves us.  One day, while struggling with the title of the manuscript, I looked out my bedroom window and saw a pink balloon floating in the sky.  Perhaps it was coincidental but it hit me then that this should be the title of the book about mothering and family life.  Pink balloons became symbols of anything or anyone that brings joy, especially the joy my children bring and of being a mom.  Well, the manuscript has collected dust and the metaphor lost its significance over time. 

Recently, the metaphor returned but in a different form as pink flowers, symbols now of the irrepressible spirit of the individual.  In spite of futile efforts to subdue, control or extinguish the unique beauty and worth of each person born on this earth, sometimes pink flowers will blossom and bloom against all odds.  Last fall, while walking at Cypress Gardens, I came upon this beautiful tree full of pink flowers and somehow it reminded me of the pink balloons metaphor though in a different form and I was filled with joy.  As far as the rejection issues with writing (or anything else in life) I find the most help by repeating the Serenity Prayer: “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” 

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