I called a friend of mine to tell him about Sex, Murder And A Double Latte being in Cosmo and Elle and how exciting it is to see it selling on the Barnes & Noble website. I expected a congratulations and a verbal pat on the back. Instead he paused and said, “Kyra, no one deserves this more than you—I mean that with all my heart. You are such an inspiration to me and when I’m in physical therapy I think of everything you’ve gone through and everything you’ve accomplished and it motivates me to push forward.”
Let me explain: My friend is a teacher who also used to coach high school football. A few years back he was diagnosed with a very rare form of pneumonia and there were severe complications that led to almost complete paralysis. For months all he could move was his facial muscles and even that took a major effort. At times his chest congestion would almost wipe out his lung capacity but he was unable to cough up the phlegm so if there was no one in the room when the alarm on his respirator went off he was in big trouble. He couldn’t press a button to call for help. All he could do was pray that someone would get there in time to save him. I can’t imagine what it would be like to know that you’re on the brink of death but being unable to call for help.
The doctors assured him that the paralysis was temporary but the recovery has been a lot slower than anyone anticipated. I’ve lost a friend to suicide before and I know others who have threatened to end their lives. While I sympathize with these people’s problems they are miniscule in comparison to the things this man has dealt with. And yet he never gives up. He wakes up each day and faces the physical and emotional challenges that lay before him and one by one he conquers them.
It’s true that I’ve been through some very bad times and there’s no question that I used my lemons and made a kick-ass citrus cocktail but I don’t really feel worthy of his admiration. I would like to think that I have the strength to survive what he has, that I too would have been able to hold onto hope but I honestly don’t know if I could.
My friend is on the verge of walking again and next year he’ll be back to teaching part time. I have no doubt that he will be coaching the football team in the near future and will be throwing that ball with the best of them. His name may never show up on a Google search and I doubt any national magazines will be doing articles about him but there is no question that he is a hero. One who has always and will always inspire me.
Sex, Murder And A Double Latte available on Barnes & Noble.com now!