I scheduled two book signings one day a part. What was I thinking? Looking back, I should have scheduled them at least a week a part. It was a lot to take in.
The first one at the Artist Hand was nearly perfect. I didn’t even get a chance to enjoy it for an entire day before I had to start preparing for the next.
It was going to be held at my sister and niece’s boutique “Meraki”. Ironically enough the definition of Meraki is that you do something you love and put your soul into it. That’s what I have done with this book…I’ve put my soul into it.
This signing was going to be more of a “Girl’s Night Out”. There would be shopping! Oh, how I love to shop…especially for clothes. My entire family is the same way. I was excited to do this in one of my favorite places in Indiana. Meraki, it is a beautiful space.
After lunch, my best friend’s daughter Morgan came to my house to help me prepare. Again, I was unusually calm. I kept thanking God for all that was happening in my life. I had a lot to be grateful for.
Morgan was the perfect assistant. We laughed the entire afternoon and even found time for ice cream, a fashion show and a quick nap. Her mother Sam was a little anxious that we were goofing around and not getting things done. She thought we would never be ready. I wanted to take in every moment of the day. I hadn’t had a lot of time to spend with Morgan over the years and I had her all to myself this day. A little human that my best friend created. Perfection.
My sister Sandy was at the boutique most of the day making sure everything was perfect. She called me numerous times to make sure we were ready. I wasn’t worried. It would all work out.
My Joshua didn’t get a chance to go to the signing the day before, so he asked to go to this one. I told him that it would be mostly woman, but he didn’t care. Maybe he was going to try and pick someone up. Who knows what goes through a 15-year-old boy’s brain? My Aiden decided he wanted no part of it and asked to go to a friend’s house.
I walked into Meraki and it was beautiful as usual. Sandy had set up the lemon drop drinks displayed at a beautiful table with an aqua blue tablecloth. Lemon drop cookies were displayed on plates of bright happy colors. A lemon tree was the centerpiece. My Mom and sisters had bought it for me as a gift. It was perfect.
We originally had the table that I would sit at outside. I love the sun and being outside even more. It was a warm day and the sun was beating down. We decided to move my table inside instead. It was a good decision. I was facing outside and could still see the beautiful day and not sweat to death.
My sister Denise sat to the left of me and my Mom sat to my right. Jesus had to stand this night because there weren’t enough chairs. Sam, Morgan, Sandy, Ben’s sisters and my nieces were also there to support me. My niece Taylor couldn’t make it, but I thought about her and made sure I signed her book that night. She sent me a text the next week saying she would cherish what I wrote forever. 💜
Then it started. All of these beautiful woman stood in line to get ME to sign their book. Some of my favorite people came to support me. My aunts, my cousins, old friends, new friends and even some people I had never met. My sister in law Peggy had driven the entire way from South Carolina to surprise me. She brought my nephew Damien as well. Josh would have a guy friend. Lol
I noticed my Josh at one point just sitting watching me. He was proud, and it hurt my heart just a little to see him watching me. This could have played out a lot differently for him. He could have been a 15-year-old boy without a mother but instead he was there to witness what positivity and prayer could do. He will do great things in his life because of it.
As usual when a bunch of woman get together with drinks and shopping…lots of laughter and lots of pictures. A night I will treasure forever.
Josh helped me get everything in the house that night. It was after 11 before we picked up Aiden had everything put away. Josh asked that I sign his book before we went to bed. I was exhausted but saw how excited he was. The three of us sat in the living room and I wondered what I would write him. I had already written and entire chapter for each of the boys. What else could I say?
I looked at Josh and saw the young man that he has become and decided to list each of his wonderful strengths. As I listed each of them, I told him how they could be a curse if not used for good. I tried to tell him how to use them humbly. I told him that his name meant that he was a leader and a good leader doesn’t tell people how to do something, he shows them. He won’t get it right at first. I actually pray that he doesn’t. I want him to struggle. That’s how we learn. He will get there someday and he will read what I wrote and understand.
I handed it to him this night and he read each word carefully. A tear ran down his cheek and he came over and gave me one of the biggest hugs and wouldn’t let go. Oh, how I loved this boy.
At then my Aiden looked at me and asked if I would sign his. Absolutely! I told him to go grab the book that he had chosen just a few days before. His copy had a crushed corner that was damaged in shipping. I had it laying out so that I could return it but when he saw it he claimed it as his own. I told him to pick a nicer one and he told me that it was fine.
I asked him who I should write it to since I call him Aiden, Aid, AA…which should I chose? He smiled and said “Lebron James!”. I laughed as said, “No honey, this is your book”. He laughed and said “If it’s my book then I want you to write it to Lebron James!”. Josh told him that it was silly. I told Josh that it WAS his book and if that’s what he wanted then that’s what I would do.
I then asked him if he wanted it to be funny or nice. He told me whatever I wanted. I reminded him of the book I had made him for Christmas that he DIDN’T like. He agreed and told me to make it funny.
So, I wrote it to “Icy Hot Lebron James”. (He makes fun of me because I thought the Icy Hot commercial was Lebron and it was actually Shaq.) I then wrote something about farts, burps and butts. I also snuck in a “don’t be afraid to be yourself Aiden”. He never laughed so hard as he read it. Josh sat and shook his head as he listened. He even cracked a smile. I loved how my Aiden always makes us laugh.
Josh took his book to bed with him that night. I’m pretty sure he will cherish it forever. And my Aiden…well, he took his too. His half-destroyed book written to Lebron James with the nerf bullet he chose as a bookmark. He will cherish it forever too, if he can remember where he puts it. 😂