Love Was Not Enough
This is the story of the deep bond between a brother and a sister. And, a story of a friendship with Tom, forged in early life that lasted until my brother along with his mother and a much younger sister, moved to a far different culture his senior year of high school.
The trajectory of my brother’s life went awry when he tried to live up to the impossible expectations his father had for him. Our father, a charismatic professor in his chosen field of education, exuded confidence and boundless energy as he stood before his classes and the many lectures he gave at national teacher conferences. Although my loved all four children very much, at home he was strict, controlling and demanded much of all of us. Wally had his own career path. In spite of this, he demanded that Wally follow in his footsteps and path and hoped he’d become an ebullient, charismatic and athlete adult like he had been. Wally failed miserably. He was a kind and gentle young man and adult.
He was a talented musician, and excellent student when, suddenly, his father decided to accept a job offer in Hawaii and Wally was forced to move with the family and leave his friends, his familiar place in a lovely little village on the edge of Madison, Wisconsin, to move to an island which at the time had rampant prejudice against haoles (Caucasians). His descent into mental illness followed him through college and several months of graduate school. Then, he crumbled. Had all the early signs not been swept under the carpet and his pleas for help been heeded, his story might have had a different ending. Love was not enough.
Daybreak in Odessa
An unusual coming of age story with unexpected twists and turns, a true account of a sheltered, naïve woman in her early twenties as she struggles to extricate herself from parents who, though well intentioned, were critical and controlling. In the desert of West Texas she meets a man who believes in her. With newfound confidence she learns to cope with both the joy and obstacles of life in a place vastly different from the home she left. Heartfelt and brutally honest, she shares the journey that each must take to give birth to one’s self.
What Readers Are Saying
Read an excerpt from Daybreak in Odessa
“A compelling and spirited account of a young woman’s gradual awakening from innocence
to a mature sense of reality. The story focuses
on significant episodes that are filled with
wonderful details. The narrative unfolds like
a tsunami in slow motion.”
John Lynen, Professor Emeritus, English,
University of Toronto
“The author shifts seamlessly between
beautifully written vignettes about family and
adolescence and the emerging relationships in
West Texas. I love memoirs and this is among
Marilyn Raff, author,
In the Palm of the Land
“Two innocents, deeply committed, find joy
and companionship as they travel an eventful
journey but end at different destinations.”
Mary Quick, Academic Tutor,
Community College of Denver
“This is a wonderful book that needs to be
read. It’s a tender telling of a timely tale. I
Norman J. Chichester, MA Theology, Poet
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Read a recent Article in the Odessa American
Newspaper by visiting the About Author Page.