Dear Exceptional You,

My name is Mary Luella Pester Listermann Strange. Yes, all of the names are mine. I began my life as a Pester and likely end life being Strange.  The name suits me. I also think the name would look swell on the cover of a book, one day.

I’m a late bloomer.

At the age of 62, I still hold a bit of girl who likes to play “Pollyanna’s Glad Game” and watch beautiful rainbows dancing through prisms of light. I am filled with hope that tomorrow will be brighter. I believe sadness can turn to joy.

What I have discovered, however, is that these optimistic attitudes are difficult to hold onto when one’s body decides to take on a life of its own.   I’m having difficulty keeping up.

I’ve always hoped that there would be a way to heal from the trials and tribulations that seem to be wrought by simply living a love time. The loss of friends, parents, a spouse are some of the most difficult griefs I’ve born.

Since I was a young child, chronic anxiety, depression, grief and physical illnesses attached themselves to me like burrs from a field. As I have aged, these briars and brambles have covered me and I feel like I’m disappearing underneath the thorns of time.

I’m tired. I have diabetes. Though my numbers have been fabulous for 6 years, my feet are disappearing in neuropathy. I’m on medications that make my brain fuzzy.

I love writing letters.  So, today, I start writing letters to you, dear ones. Perhaps we can go on this adventure together and see where we find ourselves “down the road.”

Welcome! I look forward to reading your responses and thoughts as you travel down your own road of discovery.