My book is scheduled to ship to LNK late next week and I’m very excited to get it into your hands to read and remember the place that I loved creating. At 275 pages, 166 full-color photographs, the finished hardcover product is beautiful, reflecting the talent of the team that worked so diligently to bring it to fruition. The first question most people ask: “What’s the book about?”
I labored a couple of years over the decision on whether to write the book or not. I was asked point blank why anyone would want to read a book about a restaurant that failed? That questioned stumped me, and I initially agreed with its assumption. I failed, so dig the hole, bury it and move on, right? But I could not get away from a higher thought. Something kept persisting, something bigger than I was willing to consider.
Is the story larger than the restaurant?
I eventually came to the conclusion that yes, it is larger, because I came to a point where I could see a different story. My eyes shifted from loss and failure to seeing what I gained as a result of having to finally close the doors.
I found Hope.
There was a time not too long ago when Hope was in very short supply in my life. All I could see was Despair and it was doing its job crushing any Hope that I had left. Depression is called that because it presses in from all sides, leaving little room for rational and reasonable thinking. I look back with a nauseating grief remembering how I felt during that time. It’s terrifying and I don’t ever want to be there again. If my story can provide a little of the Hope that was extended to me in my darkest hour and help someone back away from the ledge of Despair, I will be glad I took the risk to speak up.
There is a term in psychology called Object Permanence. It begins in early childhood development around 4-7 months. A child is learning that when the ball isn’t visible, it doesn’t mean it is gone forever. This is why peek-a-boo is so fun for little kids. They think mom and dad are magicians by pulling a ball out of thin air. I suffered from a lack of object permanence with Hope. Loss and failure blindfolded me so I couldn’t see it. I was almost convinced it was gone forever. I needed some important people to assure me that Hope did indeed exist. I had to trust the eyes of others who could see what I couldn’t.
I didn’t just write about cooking and print a few recipes. I tell about what was going on in my life that led me to take the huge risk to open a business of which I had no prior experience. I’ve included some of my past writing about Karen’s journey with cancer. You’ll get a glimpse of what it was like to have our community rally around her. The thread that you’ll see woven throughout is how Hope was always a part of everything, from the inception to its decline. Hope keeps drawing me forward through another loss as cancer finally took Karen away. It’s a story that isn’t fully finished. It goes beyond simple food and drink. Way beyond. I hope it will inspire someone to not give up.
The best is yet to come.