I want to talk to you about the inspiration for my memoir, “Taming Josh’s Dragon.” Fearing judgment (well, perhaps fear is not an accurate adjective, but certainly, it was a real concern), I wasn’t sure whether I should include this part of my story, more fully explained in the Acknowledgement section. Yes, I went to a local medium seeking some peace and to hopefully dispel some of the intense pain and grief from losing an only child. For years, I worried about what people would think and say of me if they knew I was into that stuff?
Would family and friends reject me, learning that I believed in reincarnation? It took me quite a while to come to the realization that this was our journey and I had to tell it honestly, how it had actually unfolded in my life. People would have to accept or reject me for being honest. Whatever the outcome, I would receive that and deal with it as it came. No, I could not deny who and what I am. I respect others’ beliefs and had to trust that they would do the same for me. This was a big part of how I survived this traumatic and debilitating loss.
Well, little did I know that ol’ Josh would come in like a whirlwind, later stated his intention to never leave me and show his true colors as a wise old soul. When Holly, a medium I had never met said, “He’s standing right behind you…WOW! He really looks like you!,” I relaxed a little and knew this was going to be a comfortable place to “be.”
When we had traveled to New Mexico for my Medical Imaging Continuing Education Seminar, Josh was about six years old. My cousin Joyce and her husband, Cortez lived in Albuquerque and we were able to spend some wonderful, relaxing and loving time with them. While I was in class, Josh and his dad saw the sights, did some shopping and even visited Josh’s pen pal on a Native American reservation. By the time we returned to Pennsylvania, he was pure cowboy, having acquired the jeans, duster, cowboy hat, boots, spurs and even had silver tips on the toes of his boots, just like Cortez had.
Anyway, when Holly first “met” Josh, she had described someone coming through to her with a feeling of severe shortness of breath, finding it extremely difficult to breathe. Later she described seeing him dressed in a cowboy hat, boots and all the regalia. That is now his normal appearance when he comes to her…or rather, to us.
A couple of years ago, starting the session, Holly laughed out loud, saying he was strutting around, also wearing chaps today. Yep, just more of the “cowboy thing”! Toward the end of our session, she again laughed; he was saying, “OK, I’m done!” He turned around, wearing the chaps, and had a bare butt! She’s come to be familiar with and enjoys his quirky sense of humor. She occasionally describes his work “on the other side,” sometimes helping and teaching other children to adapt to life over there, sometimes working with my mom, teaching her lessons of empathy and compassion, though she’s having a struggle with that. Sometimes he even spends time racing with Dale Earnhardt, Sr.
So, a couple of years into our growing friendship, Holly said Josh was asking her to tell me to write a book. “What??!!” I asked, “A book about what?” He promptly responded, “A book about us!” Well, that just set me back on my heels for quite a while. How could I ever do something like that? How difficult would it be to relive all that we went through? During my next few visits, he kept after me, saying to Holly, “When are you going to start this book?” and then later, “When are you going to finish this book?” And much later, “C’mon mom, you need to finish this book. There’s another one coming after this!” After many years of his pestering me to “get it done,” I decided that I had to bite the bullet and finish it up, as scary as that seemed.
Holly assured me that he would not be gone after the writing was finished, that he would continue to support my efforts and be there at every turn. And so, that was how it all began. I hope you find this book helpful, as I am hoping to help many parents who deal with all kinds of hardship.