I Have a Website, Friends!

I’m pretty much a cassette girl in a digital world but I somehow I still managed to get a new website! I’m so happy, there’s finally one place that links to all my other places–and you only have to remember how to spell my name! 

 (Photo cred Meredith Shafer 2016)

Ok, you could just click on this link:

www.meredithshafer.com

In preparation for the release of my second book, Mad Cow: A PTSD Story, I now have a website. 

Yeah, I’m one of the cool kids now!

๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

I don’t have a date for release yet but I’m guessing late summer/early fall. This book was hard to write and gets pretty real about our story. Most of our friends don’t even know the whole story yet, it’s just been too hard to tell.

Now that we’re in a more grounded place and lots of healing has taken place (with plenty more to come), I am telling our PTSD story and airing our dirty laundry so to speak, because I know it will do one thing: point people to Jesus.

Our pain will have a purpose. Our journey to and through PTSD will be worth it if I can tell as many people as will listen about how God miraculously saved our family. HE LITERALLY SAVED US!!! We are a miracle, and He has lit a fire under me to tell everyone I meet.

I’ve been so focused on writing and websighting that I forgot to wear actual shoes when I left the house… 

 (photo cred Meredith Shafer 2016)

So I have a website www.meredithshafer.com and the Mad Cow book to come and I am incredibly blessed. I am preparing for wherever God takes me. I’m excited to tell y’all just exactly how good He has been to us–

Blessings friends!

Keeping It Real

As the Ringmaster of my Traveling Circus, I often find myself in the midst of weird situations. My daughter has this imaginary friend named Jake. From State Farm. And he’s “got brown skin like bubba.”

Then there’s the tween-turning-teen-too-rapidly-for-me who has just started enjoying the fun of sleepovers. This means a herd of boys come through my kitchen, wipe out my pantry in a swarm of biblical proportion locusts, and leave only wrappers, crumbs, and a boy funk that doesn’t dissipate as soon as I would like.

Sweet baby boy has become ever more curious, enjoying opening every drawer, door and cupboard he can find. We’ve quickly learned that all outside doors must be locked or he’ll end up outside with only Charlie the Service Dog as his canine babysitter.

The seven year old is trying his hardest to do all the “school” we have him in this summer: speech therapy, occupational therapy. He looked at me one day and said, “Mama, I thought it was supposed to be summer!”

Me too, little man.

And of course, we have weekly wrestling matches with the VA, the doctors, the counselors and the Vet Center to help Mr. Wonderful and I find our way through this maze and haze of PTSD. It’s a really steep learning curve with lots of pop quizzes. I’m usually an A student, but this one has me stumped lots of days.

I haveย this terrific job that lets me work from home and meet awesome people in my community. I executive direct a foundation that I’ve loved for a dozen years and hope to continue at for many more.

Oh, and I’m trying to come back from taking a month off from bookย publicity, marketing events, signings, speaking engagements, much to my publisher’s chagrin. I took time off to be with family, which will always be my first priority. The powers that be didn’t think that would be the best idea but I know in my heart if I keep the important stuff at the top of the list, I won’t regret it, no matter how many books I sell or don’t.

Things have been even more circus-y around here than usual, and I’ve been needed at home. Period. There’s no worry or wishes or way I would’ve done this time any different. I know it’s not the way you should do things if you want to sell books. But I want my kids to grow from amazing little humans to amazing big humans and this summer I just needed to make sure I was present.

Here.

Available for all my kiddos and Mr. Wonderful.

The rest will fall into place, working it’s way into our five ring Traveling Circus however it will. And I am beyond positive I’m going to look back on this time and be so glad that I made these choices.

Anything going on with y’all that has involved choices that others disagreed with? Leave me a comment, I’d love to hear that I’m not alone!

Blessings friends:)

(Photo credit Meredith Shafer 2015) I would love to connect with you on Facebook or Instagram at My Pink Champagne Life or Twitter @MyPinkChampLife. Swing by and say hello!

How I Accidentally Wrote a Book

So I’ve always been a lover and writer of words. Not necessarily for public consumption but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I love telling stories, making people laugh, and generally sharing too much information. 

I’ve secretly dreamed of being a writer since I starting keeping a journal in seventh grade. I started honing my writing skills by describing all the sordid middle school gossip. You know: breakups, makeup, and what we saw written on the bathroom wall at our away basketball game. Real after school special stuff. 

I put writing to the side after kids came on the scene. My time was no longer my own so I used that as a convenient excuse. My job, my friends, my other procrastinations provided acceptable ways out of producing any written words. I still thought about writing but thinking about it didn’t get much done.

Then I was suddenly a single mom and I was just lost. I had no way to process the enormous feelings I felt so I decided it might help if I wrote them down. I bought myself a notebook to jot things down as I could, not even daring to type them out on a computer-that would be too writer-y and real.

And then along came Mr. Wonderful. When we met he was a ballroom dancing inner city mentoring tough Army guy (much more on this in another post, I promise!). He also was a man secure enough in himself and his own contributions to encourage the crap out of me.

I remember the first time I got brave enough just to tell Mr. Wonderful I wrote things down. He immediately said reassuringly that he wanted to read whatever I wanted to show him, whenever I was ready. 

I was not ready.

But the fact that he wanted to read anything at all made me want to keep writing. And writing. And pretty soon, after nearly two decades of missing the thing I loved more than cupcakes but less than God, Mr. Wonderful, and my kids came pouring out.

I had sticky notes everywhere as I had figured out that if I didn’t immediately write a thought down it was lost in the vast jumble of mama thoughts, to do lists, kid noise and job requirements. 

And then I organized them. Me-organizing things! And in a computer no less. I’m barely able to type much less blog, tweet, Facebook, and any the other stuff all the cool kids are doing these days.

When I finally let Mr. Wonderful read something he was genuine. He took the time to tell me what he liked and that he had laughed out loud. He said he would read anything else I let him. He read everything else. 

Mr. Wonderful is actually the one responsible for my book, My Pink Champagne Life (shameless plug: available at http://www.amazon.com and http://www.barnesandnoble.com). He made the suggestion that everything I was writing seemed to be headed towards a book.

A book?!?

Digesting that took awhile, but even so, I wrote. And wrote. And edited and wrote. And cursed. And threw lots of words away in frustration. And wrote. And cried. And threw a few tantrums. But still I wrote.

And I found that the more I wrote, the more my kids gave me to write about and the more I was doing what God had placed as a little seedlet in my heart years ago. And I found that the promises he made to me-that there was a purpose for my pain and that he had a plan for me-were being kept.

I ended up with a book that I sent to a wonderful publishing house that actually wanted to turn my words and years and tears into a book. During this process they have treated me like royalty instead of an unknown writer. I’m ever so grateful to the folks at Tate Publishing for helping turn my dream into a tangible thing I can hold in my hands.

So thank you to all who have made me the accidentally on purpose author.

I owe you.

Copyright Meredith Shafer 2015