Too Easy to Imagine This

Parable of the Sower by [Butler, Octavia E.]It took a friend of mind’s book to introduce me to Octavia E. Butler. Don’t get me wrong, I had heard of the author, but had yet to pick up a copy of her book. As a beta reader for my friend’s soon to be published book, I asked who was his greatest influence and he proudly responded that Octavia was. Now I know why! I just finished Parable of the Sower, the first in the Parable series. This work was both captivating and frightening. Her writing and descriptions were so crisp, so alive that you could feel our country sinking into the chaotic world that existed in this book. It was an intense, yet perfect mirror of the dark side of humanity. I know it’s a book that’s been out there for a while, but I think everyone should read it. Maybe it will scare us all into a more harmonious world.

 

Dilsa Saunders Bailey, aka "simplydilsa" is a writer and speaker sharing stories to help others embrace life living one story at a time. She is the author of a romantic, suspense series called "The Sperling Chronicles" and a self-help book called "A Comprehensive Guide to Finding the Right Doctor."

Out of the Fog of 2016 and into the Clear Light of 2017

 

DON’T GET ME  wrong, I have much to celebrate and to which to be grateful in the year of 2016. But, for most of it, I experienced a feeling of being stuck. I wasn’t moving forward, at least not in the physical sense. As I look back, I realize that the feeling of standing still was merely a time of reflection and a time to put myself on the right track or should I say WRITE track. So here I come 2017, word by word, manuscript by manuscript, blog by blog, and more. Each word I write means I am on the WRITE journey. Where it takes me no longer matters. What matters is WRITE now and what I am going to do with NOW. What are you going to do with 2017?

 

Dilsa Saunders Bailey, aka "simplydilsa" is a writer and speaker sharing stories to help others embrace life living one story at a time. She is the author of a romantic, suspense series called "The Sperling Chronicles" and a self-help book called "A Comprehensive Guide to Finding the Right Doctor."

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

CAN’T BELIEVE IT’S only a few days from a new year. This one went by like a strike of lightning. So many things happened, good and bad. So many are no longer with us and so many have joined us here on our pale blue marble. As usual, I am looking forward to the new year. I believe 2017 holds a lot of new promises that will reveal themselves. One of them is the third installment of The Sperling Chronicles. It’s in the editor’s hands finally. I am so excited about that. Hope you are, too!

 

Dilsa Saunders Bailey, aka "simplydilsa" is a writer and speaker sharing stories to help others embrace life living one story at a time. She is the author of a romantic, suspense series called "The Sperling Chronicles" and a self-help book called "A Comprehensive Guide to Finding the Right Doctor."

It’s National Bologna Day

I maby-diderots-dreamsy be telling my age, but I remember the taste of a good bologna and cheese sandwich on white bread slathered with mayonnaise after playing hard all morning. Later, I was introduced to fried bologna and cheese when I could reach the stove and cook my own. It always hit the right spot. As I grew up, I became too sophisticated for a ‘bolognie’ sandwich. It’s funny, just thinking of that old staple made me think of hot summers days, sweat pouring down my little face, sometimes covered in mud from making mud pies, and open scars on my knees and legs because I was always falling because I would not stop running. I’d be skinny as I was then if I could move at the rate I moved then.

My grandmother’s voice is still in ears saying, “Sit down. Be quiet. Stop being so fast.” I could have easily driven her to drink, but she didn’t. She eventually taught me to be still long enough, just long enough, to grow up pretty well and not too fast. Even though I miss those days, I wouldn’t exchange anything for my now, especially for a bologna sandwich. I find myself eating one of those every five to ten years and each time I do, I wonder what used to make them taste so good when I was a child. Then I realize my taste buds were definitely undeveloped and my exposure to other foods were limited. But, for those of you who still eat bologna or have fond memories of eating it, Happy National Bologna Day! Oh, and if you have never experienced. Do try to eat it at least once!

Dilsa Saunders Bailey, aka "simplydilsa" is a writer and speaker sharing stories to help others embrace life living one story at a time. She is the author of a romantic, suspense series called "The Sperling Chronicles" and a self-help book called "A Comprehensive Guide to Finding the Right Doctor."

When We First Held Hands

2013-06-27_10-48-17_515-1It had been a long day and I had a slight headache. That week had been a little crazy work-wise, family-wise, and life-wise. As usual, my nights were sleep-deprived, so on this day I decided to take an Advil PM. I have no idea how long I had drifted off into a deep snooze when my daughter knocked on my bedroom door. Her water had broken. She had already called the doctor’s office and had been instructed to present at the hospital. Talking about being startled awake and talk about shaking the effect of a sleep-inducer in less than a second, we were on our way to the hospital.

As a mother, I tried to act calmer than I really was. My daughter needed my support and no stress, at least, no added stress. Who says giving childbirth is not a stressful event? We had already gone through the trial run of this impending moment during a childbirth orientation, so we knew the drill. We followed it to the letter. All we had to now was wait, at least, that was all I had to do as we sat in her private birthing room and I finally drifted off a little on the sofa.

It wasn’t until the next morning, that our little wild child decided to make his entrance into the world. Late that morning, I had watched in inexplicable awe as he entered into the world. As he was being cleaned and weighed, other nurses took care for my daughter. I reached for him during this process and he grabbed the little finger on my right hand. I was surprised by the grip. It was tight and he wasn’t letting go. When that little boy, only a few-minutes old did that, he took my heart and ran away with it faster than a lightning bolt can travel across the sky and strike. He struck me with even greater force.

I loved my babies even before they were born and I loved him, too, as soon as I knew he was coming. But, this was a love I had never ever experienced before. It was almost surprisingly physical and as this brand new love took hold I realized something. I am a grandma. It was then I knew why my grandparents always made me feel so special. Maybe it is the realization that another generation has succeeded us, or maybe because we get to experience our children from a different perspective, it’s an amazing feeling. It that envelops your entire being. Perhaps, the reason for that is we are not the ones stressing through childbirth, through the now worrying of upkeep, and the responsibility of parenting. I don’t know what it is or how to define it, but I do know this. When I meet or talk to other grandparents, there is that same level of awe in our eyes, in our hearts, and in our voices when we talk about our grandbabies. All I know for sure is when that little tiny hand grabbed hold of the first thing he’d ever held onto in his life, it was my little finger and I can still feel it.

Dilsa Saunders Bailey, aka "simplydilsa" is a writer and speaker sharing stories to help others embrace life living one story at a time. She is the author of a romantic, suspense series called "The Sperling Chronicles" and a self-help book called "A Comprehensive Guide to Finding the Right Doctor."

INTRODUCING SNAPSHOTS OF THE SPERLINGS – ANJULI AND MICAH’S FIRST DATE

cropped-Dreams-Front-Coverv2chgLinkedIn2.jpgSHE PARKED THE car underneath the bridge across the street from the restaurant and sat there. It was an old habit she couldn’t break, arriving too early. Looking at her watch, she had arrived almost a half hour earlier than when they were supposed to meet. She adjusted the mirror and checked her makeup; she needed to freshen up her lipstick. All of what she had put on before getting in the car must have rubbed off on the bottle of water she had drank through traffic.

Anjuli watched other cars come and go, along with their passengers getting in and out of those cars. A young couple parked facing her and stole a kiss before they exited their respective doors. Then she watched them giddily lock hands as they headed toward the sidewalk to cross the street in the glow of the streetlamps. Why hadn’t she let him pick her up, she admonished herself? But, she knew why. She was ashamed of her neighborhood and her modest little house. Plus, she didn’t want her neighbors that seemed to spend more time outside than in, judging her for the expensive car he was sure to pull up in. He was a Sperling after all. Everybody in Philly knew that the Sperlings were crazy wealthy.

Checking her watch again, she decided to go into Warmdaddy’s and wait. From the number of people coming and going, it would be embarrassing not to get a table. After all, she had recommended the place. She had overheard a few co-workers talking about it and thought it would be a good idea to try. At least, she could have something to converse with them about. Rarely did she contribute to their conversations, though she didn’t think that they minded at all. They gave her the impression that she was invisible anyway.

“Do you have a reservation?” the hostess asked Anjuli as she entered the door.

“I’m not sure,” she answered, taken aback by the question. She hadn’t thought of that. Reservations were made by her for only special occasions. Was this special, she thought as she looked around toward the dining area and the little bandstand. It didn’t look special.

“Yes, we have a reservation,” Micah said over her head, startling her that he was there behind her. “It’s under Micah Sperling.”

“Yes,” the woman looked down at a list and checked it off. “We have you down for a party of two.”

“That’s correct,” Micah said, letting his arm slide into Anjuli’s leading her behind the hostess to a table.

“Is this too close to the band? Or would you prefer to be by the window?” The young woman asked.

“This is fine,” Micah said, holding a chair for Anjuli so she could sit directly toward the stage. “You are early,” Micah said, taking the seat on her right.

“You are, too,” Anjuli said as she smiled from ear to ear uncontrollably and hoping she wasn’t looking too silly as a result. But, she just couldn’t help it. It was official. She was on a date with Micah Sperling. Slap me, she wanted to yell. Wake me up.

“You are looking very…businesslike,” Micah said, wiping the smile off of Anjuli’s face.

She looked down at her outfit, a pantsuit and button down silk blouse.

“Just kidding,” Micah said, touching her hand. “I was just expecting you to be a little softer tonight. Why don’t you come out of that jacket? Or, are you cold?”

“No, no. I am not cold,” Anjuli peeled out of her jacket so fast, she shocked herself.

“Feel better?” Micah asked. “I want you to feel comfortable. I didn’t ask you out to discuss work if that’s what you thought.”

“No, no, no,” Anjuli said, not knowing what else to say. She was in extremely unfamiliar territory not having had many dates in her entire life. Not that she wasn’t enough attractive enough to garner attention, but she was always busy with other things like school and then work and more school and more work. As the cycle of her life occurred to her, she sighed.

“It’s okay,” he said, touching her hand and then her cheek with a hand softer than her own. It smelled good, too.

“Why did you ask me out?” Anjuli asked as she stared into his deep, dark eyes that were even sexier in the low light of the restaurant than they were across the conference tables at work. That question had been on her tongue for two days since he had first asked her out. There had to be a good reason why. He was a man who appeared to be as comfortable on the cover of Time, Ebony, or Black Enterprise as he was walking past her in the mornings getting on the elevator. A few times, she had quickened her step to try to make the same elevator just to ride up with him. He intrigued her. Always had. The shocking revelation that he had noticed her floated off his lips with a casual, can I take you out Saturday? Are you available? She knew how she must have looked before she answered him. At least a deer wouldn’t have tripped over its feet in his set of headlights, but that’s exactly what she had done. He had reached out and balanced her before she awkwardly said yes and then hastily recommended this place. She wondered if her co-workers had heard the exchange. Was she going to be the Chat Room’s hot topic by Monday morning? She could only hope her life would be that exciting by then.

“Curious,” Micah answered. “You have this big brain under all of those braids. I like women with brains.”

“And braids,” Anjuli touched hers. He had better like them. She had sat in the chair at her girlfriend’s salon getting a new set since early this morning. This set was so fresh, her head still ached slightly from all of the pulling and tugging done to get them into the rest of her hair.

“Braids are nice,” Micah said, but Anjuli could tell his eyes were lying. After all, he was much more used to all of that naturally curly, wild hair that his sister-in-law, Kali, was always flinging around.

“So you asked me out to pick my brains?” Anjuli moved her hand from under his. “Then this is about work.” She had the urge to put her jacket back on. There was a noticeable drop in the temperature in the room.

“Touchy, aren’t we?” Micah waved at the waitress. “Let’s get some drinks and relax a little.”

As the waitress placed their glasses of wine in front of them, the band started setting up.

“You do like music, don’t you?” Micah finally said.

“Yes,” Anjuli said toying with the wine. This was something else she wasn’t accustomed to. She didn’t drink at all. Never acquired the taste for alcohol, but she took a sip and immediately wanted to spit it out.

Micah started laughing, tilting his chocolate bald head back and then shook his head.

“How old are you again?”

“Really,” Anjuli answered testily.

“At least in your 30’s, right?” Micah asked.

“34.”

“You have led a very sheltered life, haven’t you?” Micah asked again.

“Not that sheltered. If you have forgotten, I am a forensic psychologist. I was on the Philadelphia police force for three years, went through all of their training before your company convinced me to come work for you. I have seen a lot and I have done a lot. I have been to nine countries already. Can you say that?” She asked wanting to reach into the air and pull the words back into her mouth. She wasn’t talking to the charmingly, disgusting drug addict down the block whose level of travel was to Camden or New York. She was talking to a man who could buy plane tickets in the quantities that she bought bottles of water every day.

Micah laughed even harder than the first time. “I like a woman with spark, too. I need to get you out more, away from all that pathological and psychological data.”

“I like my data,” Anjuli took another sip of wine and the second sip didn’t taste as bad.

“You remind me of someone,” Micah leaned over and brought his face close to hers. “You reminded me of how much I miss that someone. Damn, you are a lot like her.”

“I’m sorry. Am I a replacement date?” Anjuli asked.

Micah leaned his forehead against hers and whispered, “No one. No one. Not in this lifetime could ever replace her.” Then Micah sat back into his chair and drained his glass of wine. He signaled for another from the waitress.

“I think we need to remind her to take our orders before the band gets too loud in here. Don’t you agree?”

Anjuli nodded her head and wondered if he had already found out who she really was and was just toying with her.


Hope you enjoyed this Snapshot of characters from The Sperling Chronicles. The third book in the series is undergoing a clean up before going to the editor. Just wanted to let you know in the interim, there are a few new characters coming you way. Anjuli is one of the latest. Now you know! 

Dilsa Saunders Bailey

aka "simplydilsa"