A NOT SO CHANCE ENCOUNTER WAS OUR AFFIRMATION OF HOPE

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  • #13787

    Mr. Albom,

    Thank you for being our affirmation of hope!

    We met briefly in the Detroit Airport the Sat. before Thanksgiving. I am sure that we were another, in a long line of fans, that stop you on a daily basis; as it appears that your many ventures keep you on the road quite a bit.
    However, I will attempt to jog your memory. I was the disheveled, travel worn, shell of myself, in the wheel-chair; who was being dutifully pushed by her handsome, smiling, husband all decked out in his “Go Blue” gear.
    I was looking down in a half-meditative trance, hoping that we were nearing the end of our tumultuous journey, and that Baggage Claim was just around the bend, when I heard my husband in a quiet voice say “Mr. Albom?” I looked up, as he abruptly stopped my chair, and there you were, quiet and unassuming.
    You were very gracious, as we blabbered on something about being huge fans, and all the other things you’d swear you never say, if you met someone you admire. You stopped to chat, even though I could tell that you were in a hurry to catch a flight.
    What you could not possibly have known, is that I have been telling my husband for months that I was going to write to you, and you would reply. That I was destined to show you my work etc. etc. (You know like every other person I saw posting on your website.)
    What you also could not have known, is that my husband and I had been bickering all day, about the fact that our flight took off from Denver, during the last quarter of the Ohio State vs. Michigan game. And that my husband was thoroughly convinced, (even though my mother had purchased the tickets for us before the football schedule was released) that this was another, in a long line of infractions, by his wife from Ohio and her devious family.
    But I digress. So, Mitch Albom is the one thing we can agree on. I, drawing inspiration and hope from your books, and my husband through you columns. I, being a self proclaimed sport’s widow, have lost out to the DFP, Mitch Albom, and all things Maze and Blue, longer than I care to remember. And my husband, who we loving call the “Rain Man” of all things sports, has gone to great lengths to make sure he can read your column daily. My passion being all things related to artistic expression, we do tend to drive each-other crazy. However, your body of work is one thing we can always agree upon.
    These past few years have had it’s share of hard times. A murder of a close relative, which changed the architecture of my family forever. I, being diagnosed with a rare connective-tissue disorder with no cure, in the infancy of our marriage, and life. The loss of my ability to work, and with that the income we relied on. My husband’s struggle to care for a mother with matastic ovarian cancer, his now disabled wife, and just weeks ago, the loss of his Grandfather; which tore at my heart..if we had only made it back a few weeks earlier.
    I could go on, but it would not serve a purpose. For the purpose of this particular letter is to say: “Thank you”. Thank you, for being a mainstay in my husband’s world, when everything around him was crumbling. Thank you, for being the voice of a dedicated Mid-Western citizen, who would not let his city sink. Thank you for giving me another perspective, when I had lost all faith in mine. Thank you, for being the one constant in our life that we could depend on.
    It might sound silly, but if it had not been for your friendly, but truthful take on sports; I am not sure my husband could have gotten through.
    Most importantly, thank you for being in the Detroit Airport when you were…because without our: missing the last quarter of the “big game”, horrible flight from hell, being held-up at every possibly point, in our journey back to Detroit-we never would have met you.

    Here’s hoping for a little faith that this reaches you in person.
    Sincerely,
    Robyn Mercer

    BrocknRobyn@Q.com

    P.S.: Please pardon my many grammatical errors, as I had no time to proof-read or even spell-check. I know, I know rule number one. But, I was hoping that you would see this today.

    “I am a direct reflection of my connection to intention.”-Robyn C. Mercer

    #13789

    Malbom
    Keymaster

    I just posted this on facebook but i thought i’d post it here as well.

    Hi Robyn—Mitch Albom here. Sorry to be late in replying, but I just saw your post. I hope you don’t mind that I’m responding here on the “wall,” but as you received so many comments in reply, I wanted to use this opportunity to also thank the other fans here for being so supportive. Thank you, Robyn, for reaching out to me. I do in fact remember meeting you and your husband, and I’m glad I stopped to speak with you. For the past few months, I feel as if I’ve been living out of airplanes and hotels—meeting you two reminded me why I do book tours despite the long hours and heavy travel: so that I can meet fans like you. I saw that you also posted this note and some of your work on the MitchAlbom.com message boards. I haven’t gotten the chance to look at it yet, and quite frankly, it’s hard for me to keep up with all of these new works and give them the attention they deserve, but I’m glad you took advantage of the forum we created for works such as your own. I know that it takes great courage for any artist—be it a published author, an aspiring writer, a musician, a painter, what have you—to open themselves to the vulnerability that comes when you put your work out there. Kudos to you, and thanks again for reaching out.

    #13791

    Dear Mitch,

    First and foremost, now it is my turn to apologize! I did in fact see your reply to me on the day it was posted; however, my health has been in such a state that I have been unable to write back until today.

    But you need not worry-I called everyone and anyone, that I had told over the past months about my “intuition” that we were to correspond. As you can imagine, I also told everyone and anyone that I did indeed meet you at the airport, as proof that my constant ramblings, did in fact have meaning.
    But oddly enough, it wasn’t until you replied to me personally, did anyone start to say they supported my efforts and dreams. Maybe, because they have seen me suffer through so many let-downs regarding my illness these past few years- trying treatment after treatment- seeing Dr. after Dr., to no avail…or maybe they believed that I could not here the mockery in their voices, or feel the distinct burn of being placated like a child, or the rage rising inside me when I heard the pitch of pity, of which I explained was the worst thing to experience when suffering from chronic illness. I also believe many of them doubted my commitment to writing these past years. That I was trying to save face.

    In fact, it wasn’t until my post to you and of my short story(cathedral of consequence), that many of “my circle” had even read any of my work in years. So, that is why the support of complete strangers meant so much to me. They were like a little chorus of angels saying, “go for it”.

    Why it wasn’t enough to know what I knew in my heart to be true, be persistent and persuasive, and have enough belief in myself-well I can only speculate. I do think had this been “pre- diagnosis” anyone who knew me would say-that’s who you are-you never quit-you always go for your dreams-and you don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. Further, I believe self-doubt started creeping in with much ease, because for a while-I just gave up. And when you give up on yourself, others give up on you too. (Please to all others reading this, do not misinterpret that for one moment (Brock, my mother, Dr. G etc.) that you have been anything less than supportive. The others that I speak of know who they are.)

    So, even if this is all that came out of our correspondence-it was still miracle making in my life!

    In regard to you not being able to take a look at my work yet-I hold nothing but time (or lack of it) responsible. As I briefly mentioned in my first letter, it is apparent from looking at mitchalbom.com, and your FB page, that you are so busy caring for others, doing philanthropic work, writing a sport’s column, traveling and interviewing for your book tour, doing a weekly TV. show, radio show, making music, and on and on-that I could never be disappointed that it may take you some time to take a look at my work.

    It will still be there waiting, and so many have read it already; that only good can come from this. It has also given me the confidence to post some more of my work on your site, later this week. I have also begun to photograph many of my canvas pieces etc., to document and post on my future site. And as a classically trained flautist, I had given up playing because of the strain on my joints, and the rust that clearly needs shaking off-but now I have began playing a little here and there. It still frustrates me that I can no longer play with the talent and fervor that I used to. But, as with all my artistic endeavors, and I am sure yours-you are only doing it because you can’t breath without it. It is not so much for others, but for yourself. Although I am beginning to understand that sharing it, can be so empowering. When I posted Cathedral of Consequence, it was the first time I felt like I could let go of all the heartache poured out onto those pages.

    And at the risk of sounding “crazy”, I will also tell you this- All of my writing comes to me in a flood, it’s as if my higher self is sending me a message. Most of the time, I am grabbing napkins, paper bags, backs of envelopes etc, when this happens. Because, if I don’t write it down when it “comes to me” it is gone in a flash. Yes, I may tweak it a little here and there afterwards-but sometimes when I stop to look at it the next day, I can’t believe what came through that pen. (Now that I think about it, this may be part of the reason so many did not believe me about you…as they undoubtedly thought maybe I was going a little mad. Ha! Who cares? Sometimes, to people without faith,you do sound a little out there, those people want the proof before gaining there “buy-in”)

    I know this letter is now getting long winded, but hey I can’t stop myself-I guess maybe a little part of me wants to tell you everything all at once, so that when you happen to have the time to look at it, I can steal your undivided attention, and I might not have the chance to do so again. But, I also tend to be long winded when it comes to just about anything, I think I know or want to express.
    So, in closing, I promise just one more thing: When we met at the airport I had no idea that you had a new book out. (I know, shame on me, but like I said I’ve been rather isolated from the loop, not being able to use the computer and all.) Anyways, the day we got back from our trip I had a flooded message in the form of poetry; it was all about faith, and our connectedness to everything. This “essay” if you will, is what drove me to write the first letter. For when I went looking for you, and came upon your website, there was the cover of your new book.

    And last night I had another, kind of simplistic poem, as a direct quote to you, and how I was to express to you, all that your letter to me meant. I believe these two pieces of writing belong to you. So, I am going to post them next in reply. The first piece is where my quote or theme if you will, that I posted at the end of my original letter came from. “I am a direct reflection of my connection to intention”

    Again many thanks to all that you have touched, when you reached out your hand. I hope wherever you are tonight, looking up to speak with whatever version of God you believe in, may you feel the light emanating from the same moon, and may you feel the impact of all the lives you touch. And many thanks to your wife and all you hold dear, for allowing you to respond. Because all time is precious, and this was their gift to me as well.

    Sincerely,
    Robyn C. Mercer

    BrocknRobyn@Q.comP.S.: yesterday was my husband’s birthday. Your correspondence could not have been a better birthday gift. So, thanks from Brock as well.

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