Almost through the darkness of winter

13 Mar

It’s spring … oh, okay, maybe not yet. But it’s definitely time for spring, if you measure the length and severity of this winter. Just talk to anyone from Boston or Montreal, and you’ll see in their shell-shocked, still frozen eyeballs how badly we all need the season to get here. In fact, if you listen closely, you’ll probably hear the whispered chant: “6:45 P.M. March 20–if I can just make it to 6:45 P.M. March 20 …”???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

That’s the official time that spring begins in Eastern Daylight Time.

It’s been a hard and long winter and we all deserve the rebirth and rejuvenation we associate with this season. The English definition of “spring” is to pounce, to leap, to jump into activity. Water bubbling up from the ground is called: a spring.

So let’s pounce. Let’s bounce off the bleakness and cold of a severe winter and get into action.

For me and for mom that will mean looking forward to marketing and talking about our latest book: Violet Fate. It’s our favorite so far, but it came out during the worst winter of our life. We experienced the kind of loss that stops all action and all desire to plan the future—we lost my father, her husband.

As we were driving this week to pick up his last effects, we talked about what we are feeling now. We are still reeling, but we want to move forward again. And one of the feelings we recognize, when it comes to getting published is astonishment: who could have imagined just a few years ago that mom and I would have three books out and three more in action. Who would have thought that my sister Allyn would be a successful children’s book author with even more books in action than us or that she would inspire us to pursue this dream? Who could have imagined that mom and I would ever be called a “mother/daughter writing duo,” would appear on television, would give talks all over Northern Virginia? Who could have predicted Mom and I and Allyn would sweat together through the ups and downs of getting published.

We had to put our talks with Applebee’s about an official launch on hold to get through the loss of this winter. But we’re talking to them again, and we’re going to make it happen with one change: it will be a book party—a celebration of the surprises life has in store. Some of those surprises may include sub-zero weather and mounds of snow … and soul-wrenching grief. But others will start with what inevitably happens in spring: a seed germinates, spreads its tiny sprout through the nourishment of the soil where it’s placed, sticks its little head through to the sunshine, and if give enough food: grows into plants and finally flowers.


Genilee Swope Parente


Posted by on March 13, 2015 in Uncategorized


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6 responses to “Almost through the darkness of winter

  1. johanna

    March 13, 2015 at 3:53 pm

    Great post, just what I needed thinking about friends “back east” (tho here has been spring-like since January!)

    So sorry to hear about your Dad and your fall, and all that goes with both of those 😦 Glad you are back up and writing–I missed your weekly posts!


    • swopeparente

      March 15, 2015 at 3:58 pm

      send me your address my dear and your email. I owe you a book. And want to keep in touch

  2. Deborah Lynne

    March 13, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    You will bloom again, no doubt. Glad about book 3. Look forward to getting it as well. Sorry for you, your mom’s, and your sister’s loss. I went through it myself one year ago this month. It has been probably the strangest year of my life. However, I’ve come through year one and I believe it will keep getting easier. I can’t even remember the first 4 months after Scott passed. Keep holding on to each other and of course God, and you all will make it. My favorite saying became, “One day at a time.” I can see a whole nursery of blooms coming your way. God bless you!!

    deborah lynne

    • swopeparente

      March 15, 2015 at 4:00 pm

      you’re the best. finally connected with your blog.

  3. Allyn Stotz

    March 14, 2015 at 9:07 am

    Who could of THUNK we would all be published authors a couple of years ago, not me that’s for sure! And I definitely couldn’t have imagined that Dad would be gone. I’m having a really hard time continuing on with my writing after our horrible loss but I know that one day I’ll start seeing the blooms in my life start growing again. Dad would be the first one wanting that for all of us so it will happen.

    • swopeparente

      March 15, 2015 at 3:59 pm

      oh it will happen. And dad will continue to inspire. He’s inside us sister dearest


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