The bittersweet taste of success

22/10/2008 15:13


I am continually amazed at the ever-changing twists and turns, the ebb and flow of life.


I recently completed my first book. Well, it's not quite my own book (mine has been a work in progress for four years now). Two months ago an American author contacted me and I was contracted to edit and manage his book. We had our first meeting on 5 September 2008. Now, after just over a month later, the book is being printed as I'm writing this. It’s really happening.


The deadline was incredibly tight due to the upcoming American presidential election on 4 November 2008. Although exhilarating, the process required many, many late nights and early mornings. Emergency meetings, discussions, differences of opinion and coordinating research material; the list goes on and on.


I wouldn’t trade it for anything on this planet. Signing off on the final proofs was a bit like a right of passage for me. I spent a good 10 years working in newsrooms, slogging away at jobs I loved but all the while thinking “There must be more to journalism than chasing stories and interviewing some very dodgy people.”


And here I am today, at probably the most exciting and challenging stage of my career, with my racing head wondering “What’s next? Whatever it is, bring it on!”


Granted, I am still young (30-something), and I’m sure there will be many exciting projects and challenging experiences in the future, but this feeling of accomplishment has left with tears of gratitude. My mother always wanted to be a journalist, but early parenthood and an even earlier divorce prevented her from following her dreams.


She was recently diagnosed with brain cancer and in typical cruel fashion the cancer has spread to various organs. It’s all okay though, because she’s still here and able to see her daughter achieve her lifelong dream. However small my contribution to that published book, she’ll see my name there; printed in black and white.


It didn’t work out this way because I’m such a super trouper. Something higher, bigger is at work. I don’t know what it is, and I don’t need to know. My god, how can I be so happy and so very sad at the same time?


Mom, you are such a fighter – so brave. I am proud to be your daughter.