Wednesday was my speaking event and book signing at Blasco Library in Erie. For the several weeks before my talk, I printed out the flier the event coordinator emailed me and handed them out to my customers. I have worked for Giant Eagle grocery store for twenty-seven years and have a lot of regular customers who are very excited about my book. I also created an event online and invited a lot of my Facebook friends. I wanted my event to go well, and I wanted to make sure my message about bullying would be shared with many.

The night before my event I put my bookmarks, money box, business cards, and blog signup sheet in a bag. I watched the weather report. Winters in Erie can be tricky. The weather can change in a second. The weatherman predicted one to three inches of snow and gusting winds. I feared the worst. One to three inches is nothing for us, but what if the weather became worse and people couldn’t make my speaking event? Before bed I prayed for decent weather and a good turnout.

The next day there were a few snowflakes in the air, high winds, and cold temperatures. I was confident the weather would hold out for my event. We arrived at the library at 6 PM, a half hour early. A little before 6:30 people started arriving.

This man and woman came up to me. He handed me an angel ornament and an envelope. “I’m Ruth’s son. To her you were her angel. In the envelope is a picture of Ruth.”

When I started at Giant Eagle I worked in the bakery and then moved to the front end as a bagger. I bagged Ruth’s groceries. She was a sweet elder lady who requested I help her out to her car with her groceries. As I loaded her car we talked and became close. Each time she came to the store she requested me. When I became a cashier, she stood in my line no matter how long to talk to me as I rang up her food. We became very close. She brought me gifts at Christmas time, and I gave her cards with special messages I wrote.

When Ruth’s health declined, she moved into a nursing home. I visited her and brought my wedding pictures. She was thrilled. When she passed, I made it a point to go to her viewing to let her family know how special she was to me. It’s been several years since her passing and I hadn’t thought about her in a while. I have her gifts she gave me on a special shelf in my home. Seeing her son touched me deeply. He bought three books and had me sign “Mom’s angel” inside them. I was in tears.

Ruth will always have a special place in my heart. She was my angel to me also because when I met her, I was recovering for the first time from my mental illness. I didn’t talk a lot and having her to talk to meant the world to me. Her kindness spread a light into my soul and helped mend my wounds.

That night I delivered a speech on the effects of bullying with the memory of Ruth glowing inside me. I spoke from my heart. Afterwards I signed books and received many hugs. Many of the people who came were customers of mine. I sold eleven books and seven leather woodburned bracelets that say, “Stop Bullying.” One lady, who is a customer of mine, told me to contact Harborcreek School to do a talk. She said they are always looking for people like me who have a powerful story to share. In the new year I plan to contact the school and hopefully other schools.

I have a customer who said he will set up a speaking event for me at Lawrence Park Historical Society in the new year. A teacher from the school attended to as a kid is also working to set me up with North East Library to do another speaking event. I will keep you all posted of any other events going on.

If you go to the home page of this site, you can click on the picture of my book and it will take you to Amazon to order it. My book is in two bookstores in Erie: Werner Books, Liberty Plaza and Press Books on West 8th street. My chiropractor, Steve Krauza has my books for sale in his office. I’m looking for more places to make my book available to the public.

I went from a child people labeled “stupid” to a woman with a published book giving speeches against bullying. I don’t know if any of my bullies will ever apologize, but I know I have risen above them and forgiven them for myself. I’m proud of how far I have came and the book I wrote. I dreamed of this moment since I was a teenager, but I didn’t know how wonderful it would feel.

Don’t forget about the contest. Share this blog with your friends and encourage them to follow. If you’re not a follower, click follow and be entered into a contest to win a woodburned bookmark or bracelet. I’ll pick a winner in January.


4 thoughts on “SHARING MY MESSAGE

  1. Aimee, this is fabulous news! What a success! Yu sold books but even more spectacular the people who attended have given you opportunities to spread your message and share your story!! Bravo!!


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