When I was first discussing the details with my publisher, they told me that my acknowledgement page- If I chose to have one- could only be about 1700 words. That was it?? Did they not know how many people that I am grateful to? How many people it took to get me to this point? It would end up being a separate book!
I did as I was told, and fit in as many as I could then decided to use this outlet to thank the others. And so in a round about way, I can include as many people as I want!
Where to begin?
When people ask me when I started writing, I really can’t remember a specific time. I’ve always had a very vivid imagination, and attention to detail; so, the ingredients were always there. In school, when I would get a writing assignment for a short story, it would always end up several chapters! I just couldn’t stop. But, the first time I was told, that a writing career could be in my future, was in seventh grade. Mr. Gershen, my English teacher. He was the teacher that really made the English language sink in for me. It was back in the day when teachers were allowed to “abuse” their students for their own good. If he was trying to explain something and we just didn’t get it, he would throw his piece of chalk or eraser at us until we did. Needless to say, I went home with a lot of chalk dust on my person, but I got it. He made me get it. And I still remember his lessons and “tricks” to this day. But he was the one who told me that I had talent when it came to writing. Of course, I was too busy messing up my life then to pay much attention, so Mr. Gershen didn’t really cross my mind until it came to this “assignment”. I would like to thank him for giving me that base of knowledge and dropping that tiny seed that was stored away in the back of my brain way back when.
I’d like to thank Donna Braun of AdLib, Inc. A Great Clips franchise. She gets the credit for making me hate coming to work SO bad that I started writing this particular book. Anything to get me away from this job. I have never hated cutting hair so much as when I was working under her management. So I wrote, and wrote and wrote. So thank you for your inspiration. (Even negative inspiration can be used to help someone reach a goal. That whole “you can’t appreciate the light without having first gone through the darkness”? Yeah, that.)
And on that same note, I’d like to thank Jarrett Estes who has redeemed my faith in the hair cutting industry. I still don’t like cutting hair all that much, but I am thankful that God gave me that skill and has made me good at it so that I could support my family through the years. Jarrett Estes is the owner of the Shear Genius Great Clips franchise that I work for currently. He has his hands full dealing with moody women every single day. But we are treated as people not as property. We are important and not just a means to an end. Not only is he my boss, but I am happy to call him friend. And even though he knows that my goal is to write and lecture so much that I have to quit cutting hair, he still encourages me to follow my dreams. I am so happy that he came into my life and he tries so hard to make me a good, obedient, team playing hair stylist, but accepts me as a hair stylist on her way to some place better.
Which spills me over to my co-workers. I truly love my co-workers. If I have to cut hair in this season of my life, I don’t want to work anywhere else. I love my franchise, I love my boss and I love my co-workers. We not only work together, but we play together. We put up with each other’s crabby days, lift each other when we are down, celebrate each other’s achievements and just look out for one another. We’ve dried tears, boosted moral, brought out the reality checks, laughed, and laughed and laughed.
Mary, you are such a good, good person. I am grateful to you that in my moments of weakness, you see beyond my frightened exterior and make me believe that there are actually moments of greatness hidden inside.
Kathy, such abuse you take! It has been such a pleasure to watch you come into your own person! You’ve gone from being insecure to confidant in who you are. I am so happy you came to be with us and you were able to take the “challenge” and survive it!
Brian, you are deeply missed. I think of you often and it saddens me that you don’t miss us just as much. But I would be remiss if I didn’t include you on this page as you played a big part in my life and have had influence in who I have become.
Cameron Todd. We have been friends for years and although I will neverbe the princess that you see in me, your friendship still means so very much. You gave me direction, focus and boundaries. You nudged and encouraged. You gave me the push that I needed to get me going again. I wish you nothing but the best in your future.
Jeff Long, I thank you for letting me just blather on about story-lines that you could care less about or the latest problem I am having and allowing my fury to just tare into you without your causing it and the only response you give after it all is, “You sure are beautiful when you’re mad.” Wow, let me tell you how that makes it feel all better. Plus I vented too!
My computer guys. Gary Manning, Paul Arthur and Joseph Felps. They have helped me with my computer issues, my web design issues… they’ve had to listen to me whine about stupid computer stuff and have been ever-so patient as I try to learn and navigate my way around this foreign area.
I thank my Dr. Todd Frisch. I know, people don’t usually thank their doctors in these situations, but this one has been with me since I was 13 years old. He has taken me through some of the darkest hours and the happiest. He knows me so well and tolerates my phone calls and still takes care of me even after all these years.
Thank you to Bret Harris of Warm Springs Photography for my author photo.
Thanks to Kylie Prestien for her brilliant art work that has become the DCT logo. I appreciate you working with me to get just the right look.
To my Viddy. The best pen pal ever. I miss your gentle words and your calm and witty way of looking at everything. Your handwriting on a simple white envelope can make me smile before I ever see what's inside. I thank you for your inspiration over the years and your spiritual guidance that I will keep close to my heart for always!
To JoAnn Owens. My first friend after I moved back to St. Louis. Oh, the trouble we should have gotten into!! It wasn't for a lack of trying!! Thanks for being there for me and getting me back into the swing of things. We’ve been through a lot and we’ve changed and grown, but through it all, a chord of friendship always keeps us in each other’s radar. I will always consider you not only, my very close friend, but for always, MY Joey.
The rest of the list is in the book.