I am sitting on the floor in the Scarsdale/Yonkers Barnes & Noble children’s section where I frequented almost weekly with my three daughters when they were growing up. A constant mantra in our family was, “Mommy, when are we going to Barnes & Noble? Do you think the next book in my series is out?”
Tears flow uncontrollably, as I recall Ryan’s favorite series was Nancy Drew; Corey’s- The Royal Dairies and my heartbreaks that I cant remember what series Taylor loved and she’s not here to ask.
I touch the beige carpet where the girls and me sat combing the shelves looking for new books and without realizing it I am no longer conscious of others in the store. I remember what our bookstore adventures felt like and I can see and hear the girl’s smiles, giggles and pure joy in finding a new book. It’s so bittersweet as I want to concentrate on all my happy memories but can’t help feeling that all to familiar deep dark void that will never be filled. I try to control my sad feelings, as I know Taylor would be mad at me.
I clutch Paint Your Hair Blue, which I had tossed aside, thinking how could Taylor’s journey through cancer sit, in black and white, on the shelves of this particular Barnes & Noble? I wipe my tears, walk quickly to the health section where more copies of Paint Your Hair Blue are parked and remember that this book is fulfilling Taylor’s legacy of helping others and that her feisty, fun loving personality live on in Paint Your Hair Blue. I touch the smooth cover and can almost feel Taylor’s smooth glowing skin.
I wonder over to the help desk and met a cheerful blonde woman whose magnificent blue eyes show great compassion even though she has no idea who I am or that I am a local author. We chat for a while and then… she says, “Sue, would you like to do an event here and tell Taylor’s story? We will promote the event by putting up posters of the book cover.” Now, I’m swaying as I absorb her words. I respond, “I would love to,” knowing she has no clue as to the impact her words have on me. I am so very grateful and I thank her profusely.
I realize Taylor’s presence remains in the store. But, I cant help thinking how odd this is…. Then, it comes to me quickly as I glance at the children’s section. I know Taylor is sending me a “wink from heaven.”