While many, perhaps even most, SMP Authors hit the Big Apple, networking at the RWA National 2019 Conference, I was walking on the shore at Cape May Point, enjoying birds, dolphins, and the hypnotic effect of waves. You see, I had a scheduling conflict. My family gathered at the shore that week to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of my marriage to Beloved. You read that right. 5-0. Hard to believe.
We’re a messy bunch. Our children are each as different from us and one another as they could possibly be: in lifestyle, in personalities, in occupations, in opinions. It wasn’t easy for them to all take time out of their lives the same week. Yet they managed to come together to reminisce and to generously celebrate with us. We shared one memorable informal meal around a big wooden table and a fabulous gourmet meal at a historic hotel. We took walks and sunbathed in various pairs and group combinations. We looked at the old pictures. We played games. (I won Risk–woohoo!)
This morning, I was thinking about Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s Gift from the Sea which draws wisdom and Deep Thoughts from the things that wash up on the beach. A better metaphor for my life is the shore experience in its entirety. You may have to overlook some bug bites, bits of trash, or dead horseshoe crabs, but when you lift your eyes you see birds in a staggering degree of diversity feeding off shore until dolphins join in, bobbing up to breath and occasionally leaping up. You see spectacular sunsets accompanied by the crash of waves on the sand, and followed by the deep darkness city dwellers rarely experience. It is Life in all its complexity, beauty, and messiness as the Creator gave it to me. I’ll take it, and give Him thanks.
Besides, for a story teller there is no place to research the human heart better than family life.
Caroline Warfield’s Regency and Victorian romances follow inter-related families through their own struggles and joys. Her heroes and heroines may seek adventures and endure trials at the four corners of the world, but they always find their way home to happily-ever-after. Love, she believes, is always worth the risk.