It was the summer of 2003, and I lost someone I knew. This was the first loss I had faced as an adult, and it was rough. The weather that day had been gorgeous—the sun was shining and the temperate hot. She was only thirty-nine years old, a wife and a mother to two young daughters. She and her husband owned the company I was employed with at the time. My relationship with her was complicated, and I’m not even sure why that was the case. But I like to think that she respected me and appreciated what I brought to their company. In fact, I think she was hard on me because she saw herself in me. But I’ll never know whether that was true with certainty either.

That’s the thing with death… It’s supposedly the final chapter, but it doesn’t always bring closure. In fact, we’re often left with regrets or wish that we’d said something we held back saying. At least myself and this woman made peace of sorts not long before she died and on that August morning, she had called into the office and I had answered the phone. She sounded happy and she had me smiling. I passed her call over to who she had asked for and then… Well, an hour, maybe two later, police showed up at the workplace.

Needless to say, it was rough and so were the following days and months. Nothing returned to the way it had been—and how could I have expected that it would? Now I’m familiar with the term “new normal” but even so, that doesn’t erase the pain that comes with a loss. As it turned out, I wasn’t very good at adjusting and found that it was time for me to move on and seek other employment. And I did precisely that.

During this time, I gave a lot of thought to how fast life can change—how in a blink everything can be wiped out or taken away. It had me looking at life and the passing of time from a different perspective. It was this thinking that inspired me to write Rings of Tree, a literary short story, that follows a family through generations, all told through the viewpoint of an oak tree.

Why an oak tree? Probably just because it represents strength and wisdom to me. A tree would be untainted from feeling emotions, but would observe and sense them in the air.

In 2017, I revisited this short story, reworked it, and had it professionally edited again and republished. As a gift to you, I have attached links for you to download Rings of a Tree. I sincerely hope you enjoy this little detour I took into literary fiction.

Wishing you many tomorrows and the making of amazing memories,
Carolyn Arnold

“The generational tale she weaves is so true, so honest, that anyone can relate to it and feel compassion for the characters as they go through the trials and successes of life. We only get a sneak peek into their experiences, as we see them through the eyes of an eternal oak tree, but it is no less impactful.”
–Katie Jennings, Bestselling author

Another season begins…

Childhood sweethearts Jake and Cassidy always knew they’d end up getting married, but what they hadn’t been prepared for were the ups and downs that life would present to them.

Follow their family through generations of celebrations and trials, as told through the eyes and ears of an oak tree.

Available from these fine retailers and more.

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