Remember I told you many months ago that I had an article coming out in Caring Today? This is a magazine targeted to caregivers that is distributed largely through hospitals and doctors’ offices (might be hard to find while you’re waiting in line at the grocery store . . . ).
It was actually my first accepted essay and it was supposed to come out in the summer issue, expected in June. I’d already been paid for it, deposited my check and everything, but nothing happened. I hadn’t heard from them in months, there were no updates on their website, I was actually beginning to think that maybe they’d gone out of business! (Boy, that wouldn’t be a good sign, now would it . . . a bit of a curse on my publishing career?)
Well, last week the editor called and left me a message apologizing that she hadn’t been able to use my piece in their last issue but hoping to include it in the fall issue, but she wanted to first check in and see how Austin was. Now her message wasn’t that simple. You see, the last communication we’d had was in late March when I sent her a brief message informing her that Austin’s cancer had recurred (as we then thought). She replied back with shock and sadness, sending heartfelt wishes our way. But that was the last she knew. So here’s this poor woman, leaving me what’s essentially a business voicemail inquiring about my son, whom she had every reason to believe was either in treatment or dying. Oh, you should have heard her. It was almost funny, only because he is neither in treatment or dying, to hear her hem and haw and try to delicately ask a question that might well have had the worst possible answer.
I called her back as quickly as I could to put her out of her misery with my best short-version answer of why it wasn’t actually a recurrence and how totally fine Austin now is. Needless to say, she was very pleased and we then talked the business of publishing.
She’s happy to not have to include such depressing news in my tagline, I’m happy to even get a tagline, it’s a win-win.