Monday, 10 November 2014

Marking Samantha's 30 Year Anniversary of Her First Death

Hello, everyone

Because it will be 30 years since my daughter, Samantha's, first death, I wanted to mark the time with an appeal through Thunderclap.

Thunderclap will lend their support if I can find 100 supporters to the appeal.

It will cost nothing but a click for your moral support, although the books (Slings & Arrows and Gone) have been put together in an omnibus edition, which is currently on sale for only $2.99 /£1.40, HOWEVER, I am willing to give FREE mobi copies if anyone wants to read it; unless you wish to buy it.  Slings & Arrows is the non-fictional account of that harrowing time and Gone, is one fantastical answer to a question.

Thank you to anyone to has supported this appeal so far, and to those who may also think they will.  If not, I thank you anyway for reading this.

Below is a post suggested by Lisa Jey Davis - thank you, Lisa.

Healing Through Fiction by Julie Elizabeth Powell (pen)

In 1982, my daughter, Samantha, was born with transposition of the main arteries to the heart in addition to two holes and a blocked valve.  When she was 8 months old, she had corrective surgery at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children, London.  All seemed well until the 26th November, 1984 when her heart stopped and she died for the first time.

Unfortunately, doctors resuscitated too long and too late leaving Samantha severely brain damaged.

This meant that she no longer knew me or in fact anything of her life before.  She had been wiped clean; her essence vanished, leaving her a suffering, twisted blind shell, which only became worse for her during the next 17 years until she died a second time on 26 December, 2001 at the age of 19.

What this meant for me is probably quite obvious – I’d lost my daughter, and yet her body existed, in limbo, leaving me helpless to do anything except watch her wither away and suffer agonies.

I had to make many unpleasant decisions – all of which can be read in my account, called Slings & Arrows.  It is brutally honest and may prompt some to point accusing fingers; however, I did my best under such terrible circumstances.

During that waiting time, I had a question, one that haunted me because although Samantha ‘existed’, what made her who she had been had gone.  But where, I asked?  Where had my daughter gone?

So on one of those forever sleepless nights, I thought, maybe just I created a world and went in search of her.

Gone is the result.  It is a unique fantasy, one which explores other dimensions and is one answer to that question.  It tackles the host of tangled emotions, where Charley must make decisions of life and love and whether or not to prolong the agonies.  It is filled with adventure, magic, mystery, questions, answers, decisions and challenges.

Gone though is about hope.  Yes, it’s about loss and grief and love and anger and helplessness...but hope rings loudly – as, I think, does humour, for without that, life is an ever mountainous chore.

Writing both books did heal me in some ways, although I think I am forever broken.  Strangely, I could not write Slings & Arrows until after Samantha’s second death.  But Gone had to be written as soon as the idea popped into my head. 

I think I found her and hope that Avalon is there waiting for me, with Samantha smiling in the wings.

Julie Elizabeth Powell (pen)

Slings & Arrows and Gone Omnibus Edition