Excerpt for Silently Yours, Lucienne. by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

Silently Yours, Lucienne

by Amira Awaad

Copyright© 2018 Amira Awaad
All rights reserved.

Except for use in a review, no part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in print or electronic form without my permission.

Cover by Oliviaprodesign
Edited by Dr. Stanley McMahon, Independent Editor

Greetings and Salutations


Dear Reader,

For nearly twenty years, I have lived a life of duality. Online, I wrote and corresponded and lived by the alias Lucienne LaCroie, and in a way, yes, that is who I am. My choice to operate under this alias rendered me without a face. I was a ghost, a silhouette.

For years, people read, people “followed”... they heard my laughter, my screams, and even the distant beats of my heart. But, they never saw me or knew, for example, that I am a woman; a daughter, a mother, and now a wife. Or that I carry Deserts in my eyes, the Nile in my veins, and that the Earth can be seen spinning right under my skin. Or that my name in actuality is……………Amira.

Paralleling my fantastical online identity was my reality as an educator. By way of profession, I have shared classrooms with over a thousand and one students over the course of my career. These marvelous young men and women knew Amira, but never heard the silent voice — the writing and the ramblings of Lucienne LaCroie.

Right now, immediately, and with a sense of urgency, I invite you to a cup of tea with my soul. Who knows, perhaps you may find that somewhere along the way, you had met Lucienne. You may remember her from a distant past in some long deleted corner of the online universe. As you sip this slow steeped tea, take in some of the storms of my mind, and know that I am real. I am here…and I am very pleased to finally, meet you.

Silently yours,

Lucienne

Table of Contents:

On Finding a Pen Pal

Always Light a Candle Instead of Cursing the Dark

Make a Strong Performance as the Leading Character in the Story of My Life

Experience True Love

Convince the Universe that I am a Good Person and that It Should Treat Me Well

My Last Day as a Teacher

Good Karma

I am Focused and Determined and Make Things Happen

Re-united With My Best Friend

Meet My Former Students For Lunch

Go One Full Day Without Using the Phrase “I Was in a Meeting”

I Cut My Hair

Visit to the Khan el Khalili Bazaar in Egypt (again)

Pay For a Stranger’s Meal

Catch Up on “Play” Time

Loving Daughter

Egypt’s Flower Festival

Never Give Anyone Permission to Make You Feel Small or Inferior

Master’s Degree

“Thank You” Notes for Every One of My Students

On a Road Trip With No Predetermined Destination

Let Go of the Past

Be More Sociable

Kill the Pesky Mosquito That Keeps Me Awake at Night

Divorce

Wake Up Feeling Peaceful

Rewind 7000 Years – Home

The Fictitious Men I’ve Loved in My Life

I Want to See Greece

Leave Little Messages For Strangers To Find

Record the Musical Influences On My Life

Be Ghandi

Learn to Manage Stress

My Son’s Name is Spelled L.O.V.E.

My Day Job Gets In The Way

Slow Down and Learn to Break Through the Shell

Write it ALL..Say it ALL

Cultivating Femininity

Dancing in the Rain

Pray More

The Art of Swordsmanship

Letters, Candlewax, Rings

Ireland

Open a School – Close a Prison

On Finding a Pen Pal







Letters for The Unknown

I was raised all over the world, and so, I was brought up in between the cultures and traditions and values of diverse people.

There is much to be learned from this kind of life-experience.

Thing is, I love meeting new people. And I love hearing their stories on life and living. But I am also a very busy person and don’t always have the time to go out for coffee.

Realistically, I also write far better than I speak.

I would like to find a pen-pal. One with whom I can form an interesting relationship with based on written correspondence.

Always Light a Candle Instead of Cursing the Dark



A Beloved Professor

Today I left work a few hours early (and thank God I did because I was on the verge of tears). Interestingly enough, I left work to visit with a dear man who generously offered to help me with work.

As my mind convulsed like a ball of locked up spiders, I cursed the darkness there is in this world. I was so angry… he lit a candle...

I feel calmness, once again. I feel centered and focused, once again. I am hopeful. The tears don’t need to fall just yet.

To him who is wise and caring and embodies tranquility, thank you for lighting a candle and making the spiders go away.

My Friend

In the middle of this night, in the shadows of its darkness, I think of my friend. I light a candle to remove the darkness — to ease the racing of her heart.

You are my friend, and I love you dearly.

I am here, for better or for worse… you are my candle. You illuminate the corners of my universe.

You are my light

Never forget:
Light travels fast, and the universe is ever expanding... one flows through the other; they flow within each other. There is no end.

In Sickness and In Health

I thank the Lord for every breath inhaled:
In health
In love
In tears
Yes, even in pain.

Tuesday night, as I was walking to class, I could feel my body weakening with every step I took.

As the lecture progressed, my voice changed. It was deeper and resounded in my ears.

I coughed, sneezed, teared. Yes, along with half the country, I had caught a cold.

Now, it is Thursday afternoon. I lay in my bed, grateful that it is a national holiday and that I do not have to be at work. Cough medicine, decongestants, and Kleenex grace my nightstand.

And I thank the Lord, kindly, for how wonderful I feel in mind and spirit, even as my body shudders in pain.

Even If It Means “A Dentist’s Chair”

When I woke up this morning, I was surrounded by the familiar walls of my bedroom. Birds were chirping outside, the grapevine looked exquisite in the sun and is starting to bear fruit… they are still babies.

I didn’t imagine that as I was sipping my coffee, my father would call to inform me that I had a dentist appointment and that “this time you’re going!”.. oh joy.

My dentist doesn’t talk a lot. He works. Which is good. Only, he doesn’t smile much either. The thing I love is that I can get him to smile; laugh even.

Today, poor, terrified me sat in the chair and asked him if I was the only one who got scared. He said I was brave compared to his other clients. I told him, “Oh come on! I got kicked out of another dentist’s clinic.. he wouldn’t have me as his patient” and apparently, the man found that hilarious. He laughed so much he had to step away from my mouth.

If I had to choose where to be on a Saturday, I would not choose the dentist, just because… well… I would choose something else. And it’s not like I knew either! I was happily procrastinating on this one. It was a surprise appointment.

My parent’s philosophy: “Don’t tell her anything until the driver’s on his way and that way she’ll just get dressed and go.”

It’s not the end of the world, or my day. So, I went to the dentist, now my teeth are clean.

Make a Strong Performance as the Leading Character in the Story of My Life



Because My Son Said So


As I sit here, with my laptop on my lap and my son cuddled beside me in bed (we’re having a sleep over with extra pillows and fluffy covers), he asked me what this meant [Make a Strong Performance as the Leading Character in the Story of my Life]. 

And so I explained it… and then he said, “Mom you did that” and then he paused and turned to me and nodded as he added, “by being a great mother.”

So there we have it.. because my son said so.

Cheers everyone!

Experience True Love

Soulmate

I am fascinated by language. Words tend to ignite bullet trains in my mind, as it races to dissect them and understand them and analyze them.

The word soul mate is sometimes written as soulmate. My mind is racing to the telling of the ancient Greeks of human created as two and divided in half and sent afar in the Earth to wander and strive to re-unite.

It races to the dreaded, age-long musing that, there is only one perfect soul for each of us in the world. What if we never find each other.

And in a moment of pure joy, I recall The Princess Bride.. a movie I consider to be a timeless classic. What can save the farm-boy? True Love.

In my life, I have seen good matches made between many people. Some, better than others. And, sadly, I have seen poor matches made between people. Some, far worse than others.

I know a gentleman that is my match in every way. And I swear on all that is Holy in this world that what we have is True Love. It is a blessing that ignites a sense of urgency inside me. One that is entirely aware of who he is and what we have, and compels me to protect our Love as if it were the last tree on Earth.

Psyche

The name Psyche, as per mythology, is a Latin name meaning “soul”. It is often depicted as a butterfly because the ancient Greeks believed that after a caterpillar undergoes metamorphosis and transforms into a beautiful butterfly, it may carry the soul of a human being…

So, what does this have to do with experiencing true love? I will tell you..

Psyche was the name of a simple, modest mortal woman. She was created with such immense beauty, that people eventually moved away from Venus’ temple to idolize this young mortal woman. She was beautiful from the inside out..

Venus, wildly jealous, sent her son, Cupid, to cast a spell on Psyche which would curse her to marry the most hideous and evil mortal man. Cupid was the son of love, it is the fiber of his being and the rivers in his veins.

Cupid went… but was overwhelmingly charmed by the young woman’s beauty as she slept. In his heart, he did not want to carry out Venus’ wicked bidding.

Now, as he was about to pour the bitter liquid of Aphrodite’s fountain on her lips, she opened her eyes. Cupid was so taken aback, that he wounded himself with his own arrow, causing him to fall helplessly in love with her.

So, what about experiencing true love? I will tell you..

Cupid arranged it so that Psyche would become his bride. The west wind, Zephyrus, carried her to his palace in the clouds where she was always surrounded by the sweet fragrance of magical gardens and graced by the sounds of melodious lyres.

They were married with one condition set forth by the immortal: He would be the most wonderful husband to her, if she did not make any attempt to see him.

And so, Psyche heard his voice, and felt his presence in the darkness of the night, but never saw her husband; her Love.

You’ll have to read the rest of the story to find out what happened to these two charming lovers, but.. I will tell you that right now, in the most beautiful ways, I feel like Psyche.

Eros..

..was the son of Aphrodite. He was Cupid. Contrary to the commercial imagery of Eros as a little, curly haired cherub, in diapers, with wings, he was a grown man. But yes, he did have wings.

To be wounded by one of his arrows, was to fall in love. They held such power that even Eros, himself, was defenseless against them.

Eros was the embodiment of love in all its forms. Is it hard to imagine? After all, he was the son of Venus, herself.

I often wondered what his heart looked like…

I think, perhaps, I am starting to figure it out. Eros was the embodiment of love in all its forms. He is Love. So the real question is what do you love?.

Answer that question, and you will find Eros, not with your eyes open (close them); look blindly and trust yourself.

A Message to All Those Who Do Not Dare to Love..

Even if it’s not forever..

Every once in a while, I bear my truest face. The one that cannot lie and the one that has no disguise. I write this, now, without any pretty metaphors or preconceived symbols. Right now, when I can feel my heart beating inside my chest and the tears brewing softly at my eyes.

I write this without the stern exterior, without the shaded indifference that molds around my core.

No, these words are from my core.

Because it’s worth it… On our search to find true love, or see true love, or experience true love… let’s face it, most of us, if not all of us, well we get hurt.

Yes, I’ve been hurt. A lot. But who hasn’t?

I am caught up in the aftermath of a failed marriage that has left me with doubts and a healing heart. Between that and my full time job and my Master’s degree and my eight year old son… I have come to find that I had lost every faith I ever had in ever experiencing true love. I had come to believe that it was a myth; and a dangerous one at that!

I was wrong. God only knows if I will ever see it, or find it, or be fortunate enough to experience it one day…

Because after I shed away the many layers. The strength, the indifference, the stress, the lip-stick, and the clothes. I am left only with a faceless purity that is my core.

And at my core, I do believe in a true, unselfish, burning love; one that can strip me of my defenses and give me the courage to speak the language of eyes and the words of Love.

This is a message to all those who do not dare to love… please reconsider.

Convince the Universe that I am a Good Person and that It Should Treat Me Well


Open Letter to Time and Space

Dearest,

I was a soul without body. Remember what you showed me; whispered into me?

I was born; crying and carried on the single feather of an angel into this world. Do you recall the pain of my first breath; inhaled?

I am writing to you for the first time, being but not human, to exclaim that I find life, well, rather unfair. It moves too fast and my educators did not serve me well, in this respect.

I read allusions made to “Dawn with her fingertips of rose..” They taught me to read, when I wish they had also taken me by my hand and showed me how important it was to go out every morning and see it.

Darling Universe, I often search for you; ever expanding; on my back I look up at you, twist my neck to behold you, squint my eyes to see into you, and in my heart I know you look back down at me. You are beautiful.

Do you know what I have finally learned here? That there are sparkling stars in my eyes, burning suns in blood and, like you, my heart is ever-expanding.

I’ve searched for you and missed you and yearned to find you, when all the while I carry every fiber of your existence; Time and Space, inside my mortal body; you nourish and tickle me.

And when I die, you will shine within my soul; you will show me light and whisper the same words of peace and Love.

Eternally yours,

Lucienne

It Sent Me a Sign..

In the classroom where I teach, the Universe saw fit to answer my call. After the bell, they filed in.. they filled up chairs and I went about my business writing dates and topics.

And there it was, right under my feet: A small piece of paper, carefully folded, that held a message. It did not bear my name, it was only marked by the number 1 neatly written into a circle. It said:

The world is dark, and light is precious. Come closer, dear reader. You must trust me. I am telling you a story. So, trace me down!”

I will explore… for now, it remains carefully folded… Timeless in the Universe… snuggled into my wallet.

Thank you

My Last Day as a Teacher

Blahzae

Really, that is what it felt like on June 30th. Yesterday; blahzae.
No, blahzae is not really a word (in any language I know of) but it comes from the root blah as in blah blah blah… and is accentuated with a very French zae ending because that is what the feeling sounded like in my head. I drew a blank all day; the accountant actually called me on the phone so that I could go downstairs and get my pay! Really, I don’t think it was all sinking in yet; still hasn’t.

Ok.. I will write this in the chaotic way its stored in my head and hope for the best:

Coffee tasted good (from On The Run).. sign in for the last time.. Custodial staff keep crying every time they see me (like I’m on my death bed).. Spider Solitaire! Spider Solitaire!! Spider Solitaire!!!.. my desk is so empty (no papers; nothing).. damn, those cookies are so good.. saw my former student; blast from the past (damn near cried, so close!).. went downstairs, went upstairs, went downstairs, went upstairs, downstairs, upstairs, downstairs blah blah et blah.. Sat on school stairs, saw Iphi and Ada through car window (beautiful smiles; beautiful people).. chewed the fat with 50 different people (actually, I was more listening than chewing).. went upstairs, walked into staff room and saw yellow flowers peaking over the top of my cubical.. the letters bore my name.. Read them, then read them again, then kept reading them (they make me smile, you know the kind that lights up a dark room, that smile).. bell’s almost there, 1:00, 1:03, 1:05, ring already!.. 1:30, it rang. Signed out for last time, said goodbye to co-workers, (said good riddance to some people), I don’t say goodbye to friends, I see them for lunch in the afternoon. Carried my beautiful new vase with yellow flowers (that’s the first thing I’m putting in my new office, walked out the door, crossed the street (damn near got hit by a crazy driver but thankfully survived), got in the car and I was meeting bound and then home bound.

The Word “Last”

So it begins, my last week.

As of tomorrow, it will be my last Sunday, last Monday, last Tuesday, last Wednesday, and yes, my last Thursday… pay day.

Only, the word last sounds so final. I look back and wonder at how it went by so fast! I thought it would last longer and now I’m looking at my last week..

I have learned from my past and soon I will be free from occupational oppression, at last!

Grading Essays

I love libraries. Shocking right? One of the reasons I love them is because there is an incredible energy that exists in the midst of all those books… It is that energy that I love so much.

Whether I am studying, reading, or sleeping… I can feel it; exciting and tranquil at the same time.

Right now, I am seated at the corner desk in my staff room. I have three stacks of essays that are coming along slowly, but they’re coming.

The energy is not there… And the rattling lips that surround me are starting to get on my nerves.

If I can only carry these three stacks to the library … Sigh.

A Handwritten Letter Addressed to The Lady of Shalott

It was the work of an artist that made this entry possible. I write this now for her. Your tears are very dear to me, and though I didn’t see them, I felt them in my bones, and in the quivers in your voice.

For many hours it sat on my desk. I loved the letter without reading a word.. I couldn’t open it. I ran errands and when I came back, the beautiful letters that spelled my name swirled under my gaze. The Lady of Shalott.

The administration called an impromptu meeting, and I was summoned down to the Assembly Room. I took the letter with me. And in the midst of their chaotic protocol, I carefully opened it, and read.

It was the work of an artist that captured me and captivated me. I heard your voice speak every word and it drowned out all the lips rattling around me. Your single voice has that much power.

I read it carefully, my dear, I read it once and twice and three times through. I’ve memorized your letter by heart, as I should because I carry it in my heart.

Your words to me, “Please don’t pull away from this friendship, and never let age act as a barrier between us

My words to you: Age is a state of mind.. it is a measure of physical maturity. Nothing more and nothing less. It will only be a barrier to those that erect it as such. I will not.

Thank you, my dearest, for the art; for the words; for the beautiful piece of you that you have carefully folded into that envelope. I will cherish it for as long as I live, and I will live by the words enclosed. I swear it.

I don’t have a younger sister, but if I did, I would have wished her to be you.

Smile, forever and for always… Very soon, we will meet for cheesecake.

Soon

Today is the 8th of June, 2011. For the past ten years, I’ve been employed as an English Literature teacher at the same institution. I am the senior staff member there.

Today is the 8th of June, 2011. This is my last year as a teacher at this school. I chose not to return next year. I have 22 days left in my contract.

Today is the 8th of June, 2011. Today was the last day of classes for my students. Today I taught my last class, and it went by so quickly.


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