Long Drive, Check out this amazing cover!

 
Title: Long Drive
Author: Jessica Florence
Release Date: Jan 9, 2017
 
 
 
There is a long road in everyone’s journey in life.
For some people, it’s a way to get from one place to another.
For others, it’s a search for one’s purpose in existence.
For me, the road was where I could find peace.
When everything in my life had shattered, I turned to the road.
And that’s where I met him.
Killian Lemarque.
A beautiful truck driver, and my salvation.
One month on the road together is the deal, and when it’s over, I will have hopefully figured out what I’m going to do about my torn reality.
But sometimes the road can change everything.
One Month. One Truck. One Long Drive.
 
 
 
 
 
Jessica Florence, Kaleidoscope of Romance
 
Author ❤ PotterHead ❤ Movie Geek Extraordinaire.
 
Writer of Surviving Valentine. The of The Heart trilogy, Evergreen,Lights of Scotland Series, and The Final Love series.
 
When she's not writing her next invigorating story. You can find her running her own business, and spending time with her husband and daughter in southwest Florida.
 

Okay so those of you that don’t know, I LOVE to read. I came to know Jessica by happenstance and this book of hers is something I have watched transform and grow. This story is one after my own heart as the wife of a truck driver. The subject matter is like nothing you’ve ever seen. Jessica is a fantastic novelist with such a talented and guided hand, her other works are certainly worth checking out as well. Do not forget to stop by her facebook and other social media outlets as well.

Trust me, you guys do not want to miss this book. Having gotten some delightful little snacks myself, I am chomping at the bit. I already have my preorder in. DON’T HESITATE, especially you trucker wives out there. This book is so unique. This is nothing like the weaksauce romance novels with the same old plot lines. This is new, fresh, and AMAZING. Give it a read and you won’t regret it, I cannot wait to see what the ending has in store. With a wonderfully strong female in the lead role and a hunky, hard working trucker as the counter part, this story has captured my heart from go. This cover is GORGEOUS. Stay tuned as sometime soon I’ll have more details to share with you about the book!

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But if you never try you’ll never know, Just what you’re worth

The other day some friends and I played a game. We listed off songs that we could listen to for the rest of our lives. One song only, forever. I of course had trouble choosing and ended up picking three. Music has always been the mainstay of my life. One of my friends chose “Fix You” By Coldplay. I listened to all the songs chosen and this one resonated deeply with me.

As of late there has been a lot filtering around with Alexandr’s care that has been incredibly difficult, and I have found it so hard to muster the strength and tenacity in myself that I typically have. that strong will and push forward attitude I always seem to have has been so rocky. perhaps it has been because of some of my own personal struggles but whatever the reason my resolve is being tested by everything that is facing us at the current moment.

Alexandr entered this world under the most spectacular of circumstances, at thirty three weeks, and spent a month in the neonatal intensive care unit. Since then it’s been a non-stop roller coaster ride. In the last year we’ve spent a large amount of time in therapy four times a month. We have had progress, and we have had setbacks. Anytime we make headway I feel like we do an about face and it’s two steps in reverse.

While other parents can speak to their children who are about to turn three, I cannot. Instead we communicate mostly through hand holding and pulling. I have spent the last few weeks struggling with what therapies to choose for him, what will serve him best, how to get them for him, and how to move forward.

Progress.

That’s always the word of the day, how to make progress. How do I get through to our son?

I told my sister the other day, who understands exactly how I feel, that I feel as though it’s like being locked outside a house with your child inside, staring in a window from the cold. You cannot get in until they can figure out how to open the door.

Autism is a fickle thing, and though he may not have an official diagnosis yet, that’s the label that we’ve all put on it at this point, his therapists included, and it’s something that over time, I’ve had to come to terms with.

Fix you.

That’s exactly how I feel.

I wish I could fix it. I want to fix it. I want to make it all okay for him, and make the pain go away. I don’t want my son to be upset when he is around too many people, too much light, sound, or just general chaos. I want him to be able to go from place to place without being so upset he can barely breathe. I want to take all his pain and anxiety and bear it on my own shoulders. Give it to me, and make him okay.

Today is world prematurity day and I was reminded once again how precious he is. Despite all of this, and all of our struggles, I have taken the last few days to step away, away from all of it, the appointments and therapist evaluations. The upcoming school placement (he starts preschool in February). The developmental pediatrician evaluations and the figuring out what to do about this child psychologist business, and I stopped to enjoy my son.

Sometimes I get so caught up in all of the need of development. I forget to just slow down and enjoy him as he is now. I focus so much on what the next step is, that I forget to take in the now.

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 Sometimes we have to just let go of what we think we can do, to find out what we really can do, and be. We have to get out of our own way. I feel like I spend so much time at times TRYING to be the best parent that I can, that I miss just playing in the dirt with my son. I should let go more often.

In the past two days I’ve been able to take down the barriers in my house and stop using the baby gate, and bring him a little more into my world. He has his own space in our office at that little desk of his own. He is learning a little more about boundaries and I think he’s actually understanding it a little bit, because I’ve given him that opportunity. We both have been feeling sick as well and for the first time since he was seventeen months old he wanted to sleep in my bed with me, and I haven’t gotten those kinds of cuddles since he was that age either. I forgot what it was like to have him need me that close. I cried my eyes out after he fell asleep. Something he will probably never know or understand, but I needed that from him so badly.

I just needed to try, to let myself know what not only I was worth, but what he was capable of.

I think we both needed what came out of the last few days.

There is no fixing that needs to be done in this house I have always known that, and while I may always want to make him feel better because I’m his mother, and will always want to take that weight off his shoulders, I’m learning every day to handle things a little better. It is all a process, and we learn from each other.

 

Give em land with a good view, to start a family

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Things in our country are tense right now. A lot has been going on the last few months and as someone who follows politics pretty closely, and who has been a pretty avid follower of it since I was in high school it’s all hit pretty close to home. I have seen a great deal of hate, sorrow, and ugliness in the days following the presidential election, and I feel the need to turn away from these things.

With some of the important holidays just around the corner I’ve felt it’s important to reflect on the things I’m thankful to have. Before I know it Alexandr will be three years old. His Birthday is in February, and I cannot believe he is growing so fast. His mind amazes me on a daily basis. My husband is my love light still and that flame burns with a ferocity that I’ve never known in life. I could look into his eyes for hours. Pretty sure he could do the same with me, though I cannot pass words from his lips in his absence, I think I could make a close appraisal of his level of affinity.

This year will find this house void of company come Thanksgiving. The sounds of my husbands voice and laughter will not be here. As a result, our footsteps shall not grace it’s floor either. Alexandr and I will do what most people do, and for once fit into a strange societal standard I’m not accustomed to meeting. We shall travel for the holiday. We will make new memories with my wonderful sister, and her beautiful children. We will forge fresh beginnings, and I’ll be invited into the warm and open arms of family. We’ll cook turkey, drink wine, and share our lives in a way we are not always able. I am grateful for the opportunity.

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Not all people are as blessed as I, nor do they lead as warm and loving a life as I do.

I face challenges, with my health, and my sons.

I do not lay my head down at night worrying about the roof over my head, or if there will be food to eat in my home anymore, I do not worry if we will be able to provide an ample Christmas to our child. The contrary, I wonder where we will put the new gifts he will be provided!

I realize now more than ever, that the love, and family that I have, albeit small compared to some, is so warm and strong, that I could wrap up in it like a thick blanket, and carry it with me. It would shield me from so much harm if I would let it. That is a true blessing, and for it I am incredibly thankful.

 

The thought of arriving, kind of feels like, dying I don’t want, to go home and be, alone…

  So I have been on hiatus for some time now for those who may have noticed. Enter my triumphant return. Ever changed by the experience.

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Both my chariot and husband awaited me. We rolled away with eighteen wheels and where the road normally took my love light from me for a time, and with it my heart along side him, this time I went along for the ride. For two whole weeks I left my normalcy behind. It was like being swept into a whirlwind. Before I knew it we were leaving everything I knew behind and even states that I knew behind. Then it was just me, him, the darkness and the headlights on the ebony asphalt in front of us. My feet up on the dashboard of his truck, we had all the time in the world, or what seemed that way in our minds.

When you only have four days a month in your marriage to drink each other in, those moments become precious. You treat each day you are with each other like minute to minute, you have to make it count. Having so much time was almost dizzying, for us both. At first I don’t think either of us knew what to do with each other. We have been together now for almost a year and a half, and our one year wedding anniversary is incredibly soon as Valentine’s day sneaks up on us. We know each other so well that we can be in different parts of the country, yet we can feel the dissonance in each other. Like some strange disturbance in the force we can simply detect when the other person is suffering silently.

This leads to so many phone calls randomly, be it in the middle of the afternoon, or at three in the morning.

“I needed to hear you” or “I felt like I should call” I’ve never felt so synced with someone in my life. Our souls dance across the distance, and I feel it, no matter how far apart we are.

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As the miles passed we talked. We connected with each other on a level we hadn’t always had time to. With the creeping stretch and wind of the roads and hills, the crawl of the pavement and the tick of the clock, every mile we drove we both learned a little more. Zane and I have been friends for so many years. Six to be more precise, but there’s so much that sometimes you just don’t say, and even as partners there is always room to learn more.

I shared stories from my childhood that he had never heard. He shared some with me. The miles passed. We made jokes, laughed, held hands between gear shifts up hills and around curves. I read books out loud. We sang together, loud and uninhibited in the wee hours of the morning. We talked of our aspirations for our life together, and for our son. I took in the landscape of eight beautiful states. Four of which I had never set foot in before in my life.

On top of this I gained something else. Perspective.

I gained a newfound respect for the man that I love.

I have always had the deepest and utmost admiration for Zane and what he does. The man sacrifices himself and his time to provide a life for his family. It kills him to be away. The look of pure anguish on his face when he has to leave is gut-wrenchingly brutal. I thought I knew how hard his job was. Until I watched him do it. He works so much harder than I could have ever imagined in my head or realized.

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The time I spent in that place he calls home when he cannot be with us, his family, at his real home, showed me what an amazing individual I am married to. I felt like I gave him enough credit an admiration before. He will get even more now, of that there is no doubt.

The hard part comes now. Now I am home, and I have had to let go of his hand once again. This time for eight weeks, so that I may have my light back in my life for Christmas. After getting such valuable time together I got comfortable. I keep reaching for his hand, and turning to see his face. Only to be reminded that he is not here, and sadly, I cannot see him. Thank goodness for technology.

What I wouldn’t give for his breath on my cheek, or his hand brushing back my hair.

His gruff voice telling me how much he loves me in my ear as he holds me tight.

Lying next to him as we fall into a deep sleep.

Dream of me tonight my love.

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I hear voices all the time…

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What is it that defines us? Who we are and the choices we make? We all have paths in life. Roads we travel down, sometimes dirty, rocky, or even muddy. Other times we are met with smooth pavement under the tires. I feel we all are presented with obstacles and detours and how we decide to handle that is part of what it is that writes the ultimate biography of us. Who we are and the nuances of our personality.

I like to think that I am a strong person, one who has not only been off-road, but lost with a broken axel and busted mud tires more times than I would ever want to admit, even to myself. Every time I have found my way back to life. I mend the frame and drive on. Much like an old beat up Dodge that has seen better days but still runs and drives, I am here. Despite the fact that this old diesel engine is a bit knocky and tired.

I know I know, that is a lot of parallels to roads and trucks, but this is me we are talking about.

Lately I have had the voices of those around me, those who are so important, in my head. I have had a lot of things on my mind as well as many challenges to face. It has brought to the forefront some people around me who I don’t think will ever change. It has also reminded me that I do have the support of a few people that I could never trade. My wonderful husband, my amazing sister and brother-in-law, and even, at times, my grandparents down south. Though my phone calls to them are often short, and somewhat cooky, I will always be thankful for my grandmother and her silly southern love. I will never forget how much love I have been given from them over the years. My sister is a driving force in my world, I am ever thankful for technology and the ability to keep up with her every day when we cannot see each other.

I may not be perfect, and I have certainly been through a lot. I have become so much more aware of the truth in the world, and about people.

So what is it that makes us who we are? Is it those around us? The things we see? The way we were raised? I believe it is in the choices we make every day. You are who you choose to be. If you want to get back on the pavement, you need only turn the wheel, and start getting out of the mud.

All my friends are heathens, take it slow…

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I’m not exactly anyone’s idea of a “lady”. I’m not going to say I every really tried to be. I was always the one who avoided the color pink like the plague as a child and swore off dresses. I was climbing trees with and riding bikes with the boys.

I had a conversation with an old friend, Richelle today. It was a short catch up and chit chat about random things in which purses and shoes came up. Little known fact, I have become an incredibly large shoe addict. I am going to confess it outright I have fallen into this guilty catagory now. I have more shoes than I have room for or occasions in which to wear them to. When we buy our home, which we are shooting for hopefully next year, we are going to honestly have to plan for a larger closet to accommodate my clothes and shoes now lol.  I also have a hard time passing up a good deal on a new pair even though I have so many lol. I’ve also noticed that I’ve taken up more girly hobbies as of late. I certainly use makeup more often, I regularly carry an ACTUAL purse instead of one of those crossbody bags that barely passes for one, and find myself shopping for multiple ones as a guilty pleasure. I wear skirts and dresses and love it. I enjoy accesories and have an extensive collection of girly things. I mentioned that I even have a pair of tennis shoes that are primarily pink now. She flattered me by saying that I was most certainly girly, if not adorable in our younger years anyway.

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As you can see my style was quite that of I LIVE IN JEANS AND TANK TOPS, throw in a hoodie for good measure and a t-shirt here and there with a band on it and you had my style lol. The other picture is from today. I’d like to say I’ve grown up, and changed, while I still wear t-shirts of course I’m not exactly what I was back then. I am pretty sure my face is stuck in some time warp, because I still look like a baby LOL. I’ll take it for as long as my body decides to let me keep it. I may be falling apart on the inside but I still look eighteen sooo, eat that chronic illnesses! ❤

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This did get me to thinking about something else, as today marked a very important day, as did yesterday, in my personal history, as well as our national history.

How often do we realize what we mean to others? I spent so much time of my life worrying about others accepting me, saying the right thing, doing the right thing. I was always so incredibly insecure and awkward. Afraid of losing those around me. So very few of the people around me even knew that but I was so afraid of them turning on me or their friendships with me being conditional that I was fearful of getting truly close to anyone, and in some cases I still am. I stopped to ponder today if some of those around me back then ever felt the same. Maybe I was one of those people to them? Maybe I was the one they looked up to? Maybe, just maybe I was one in their life whose opinion really mattered to them.

I feel like a lot of us let our insecurities hold us back, from wearing what we want, talking to those around us, or letting in people. You never know. You could be someone’s inspiration, or foundation. That friend you are so scared to lose because you are afraid of their opinion, simply because you think so highly of them? You may be that person to them. Never underestimate what you mean to someone. Live life with as little fear as possible. Go out and reach for the things you want. I am thankful for my husband Zane because I spent a large portion of my life surrounded by people who told me I couldn’t or shouldn’t do things because I was “too short” or “not quite in shape enough” or “couldn’t pull it off” and I let it hold me back from things that were really part of me anyway.

For the first time in my life I am starting to experience it unbridled. I try very hard to keep my fear of rejection or judgement in check, and do what I feel happy doing, so long as I am not hurting anyone else in the process, or myself. Honestly? We only get one spin on this Earth, and mine may very well be a short one. I want to show my son Alexandr he shouldn’t be afraid to be himself, and I never want to regret the things I didn’t try or do, the people I didn’t let in, or that I wasn’t there for.

Also, have a song, because it’s stuck in my friggin’ head.

This brokenness inside me might start healing…

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Today I am going to go back to my health for a moment. As always the rollercoaster continues.

Despite my history suggesting rheumatic disorders multiple times, when I was tested it did not show that when I finally made it to a rheumatologist. Given that I was being treated with prednisone this is likely the reason why so I have to wait and get retested. However, I did get slapped with a new issue. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, and started a new medication called Lyrica.

Second to this…I have become increasingly worried about my kidneys. I see my nephrologist very soon which I am glad for, he had me do a new 24 hour urine collection since I have hematuria and proteinuria (for those who aren’t aware that is protein and blood in your urine, both bad things.) My blood pressure has also been spiking and my vitamin D has been incredibly low.

I barely got 30 ounces out in 24 hours.

This alongside the fact that my filtration rate in March had dropped to 72 scares me. I am nervous as to what I will find when I go to my appointment. My rheumatology clinic has also requested I push my nephrologist to do a biopsy. Something he really does not want to do since my condition is so unstable and my illnesses so largely unknown at the current moment.

It seems that no matter which way I turn my life is short. Too short, and painful. Some days are easier than others, some days I find myself fighting my own body to move.

I am twenty nine years old and I own a cane and a wheelchair. I have a handicapped tag for my car. These are not things I am proud of. I hate them infact. I cannot remember what it is like to be free of pain anymore. What makes me sad? I will probably never know what it is like to feel as though I am not a burden on my husband or family.

No matter how much they say it, and want me to feel I am not. I still feel I am, and probably always will.

But what makes me saddest of all? I will not have as much time as I want with my family, my husband, my son.

I am a ticking clock. I know this, and I am powerless to stop it.

I will spend the rest of my life knowing that I cannot get any of the precious seconds back that I have wasted on this or that. Standing in the line at the checkout, driving from place to place, the mundane details, or even all the time I have had to wait to find out what really is wrong over all. The whole time my kidneys get a little weaker, my body fails a little more. More damage that cannot be repaired.

My time here is so incredibly precious. I am ever mindful of this fact.

I bleed, I pine, I burn for things that I cannot ever have, better health, a body that works properly, the ability to have another child, better still, the ability to be a healthy mother for the child I have, and my wonderful husband.

Hold on to this life, it truly is the only one we get. I spend my every day trying to remind myself that I am writing my story and painting my world, and one day I’ll be gone, and it so important that I relish the moments I have, and drink them in like a tonic. Breathe it like it could give me the time I crave so desperately.

If love could extend your life, the love of my family would keep me alive for hundreds of years.

I have added more vocal covers to my youtube channel and here is one of my more recent ones.