When life takes you on very unexpected paths, it is sometimes helpful to step away from your situation and look at it in a new light. Carole and Troy Amber were told their baby boy TJ was diagnosed with a life threatening disease and would probably not live past his second birthday. They were devastated. Although deeply saddened, they had to continue living their lives. On the car ride home from hearing the news, Carole had a vision of horses and ladybugs. The horses were crying and the ladybug said, “But I don’t know how to be a horse. I only know how to be a ladybug.”
A few days later, Carole wrote the story, The Gift of the Ladybug and gave it to her son TJ for Christmas. They read it to him over and over. The Gift of the Ladybug is a beautiful metaphor for dealing with pain and sadness when you discover your baby’s life is not going to be as you thought. The horses’ sweet baby ladybug Polkadot lives a happy joyful life and helps his parents realize that even if his is a short life, it is special and meaningful.
“In a way, this book saved my family,” said Carole. “Its message helped us during our toughest times and helped us redefine the way we looked at our situation. It taught us to embrace all of TJ (including his disease), and learn to find joy and peace in our very difficult circumstance.”
TJ passed away in April of 2009. Carole has decided to publish the book to help other families cope with their own difficult situation. The Gift of the Ladybug is being released on TJ’s birthday, January 28, to honor him as well as raise funds for the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation (UMDF).
Details for the Saturday, January 28, 2012 launch day:
• Pistacia Vera book launch day: 7am-7pm on January 28 the book will be available to see and order. With every book purchase, Pistacia Vera is giving away a $5 gift card. Meet the Author is from 9am-noon.
• Donations to UMDF: Carol and Troy are donating about 35% of proceeds ($1 per book) and have a corporate matching program where companies will also be giving $1 per book sold on 1/28 to UMDF.
Beginning on February 1, the book will be for sale in local establishments such as Cambridge Tea House, Pistacia Vera. You can soon learn more at www.giftoftheladybug.com.