What matters most to you?

Clip Art Graphic of aWHAT MATTERS MOST TO YOU?

This is perhaps an ambiguous question and, while it seems simple on the surface, it has as many different answers as there are stars in the sky. At first blush people will most often answer my family, my church, my friends. But what about your job, your home, the trust you place in others, your health, your eyesight…the list is endless and it differs for each individual. We often take for granted, the aforementioned blessings, but what if you were faced with a situation where you had to give up one? Which one would it be?


This is the situation that Louise Palmer faces in my latest novel “What Matters Most”  and before she reaches aGirlChild_Cvr2.pmd decision, her best friend will disappear and her marriage will be tested beyond expectation.

I loved writing this novel, because it looks at the simple blessings of life that we so often accept as a given.  Unlike Louise Palmer, I’ve moved around extensively and over the years left bits and pieces of my family and friends in far-flung places throughout the country.  One thing that I’ve learned is that neither time nor distance can truly separate you from those you love. A loved one doesn’t have to be within walking distance to stay in your heart.


Over the next few weeks, I’ll be posting stories of the things that matter most to me, and I’d like to invite my readers to join in the fun.

Please leave a comment and tell me about the things that matter most to you. It can be something as small as a weekly phone call, or a shoebox of memorabilia. Or it can be as critical as your eyesight, or the last moments spent with a loved one. Open your heart and let’s share.

Please include your first and last name on the comment and your e-mail address – I’ll make sure you are added to the list of subscribers for “Bette’s Best” a monthly newsletter that is chock full of special surprises.


Of course, there will be prizes, I love doing giveaways and sharing delights with my followers! So, on April 26th I will announce the answer that most touched my heart and that lucky person will receive a $25. Gift Card to either Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Two lucky runner-ups will also receive a prize, but more about that in the weeks to come.

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4 Comments on “What matters most to you?”

  1. Mary Preston April 5, 2013 at 3:48 am #

    My Father always loved making things. So, on every visit he would bring up something. Over the years he made a dolls house, clothes line, saw horse and doll’s cot for my daughter. We have lots of small useful tables around the house. I have beautiful cutting boards & boards to go under hot things like the kettle & toaster. Treasures everywhere really.

    My most precious is a block of wood. It’s an off-cut from a 2X4. It was never sanded, or leveled off, though it did get a ‘slap of paint’. It stands sentinel at the front door. It’s been re-painted a few times over the years and serves very well as a door stop.

    My Father is now in a Nursing Home. He is frail and weak in both mind and body. He needs complete round the clock care.

    I move that door stop each morning, as we open the house to begin the day, and each evening. I think of my Father as he was & is.

    That block of wood is all that my Father has been to us. Dependable and reliable, strong, of service to others, not one to stray from the path.

    I still remember my Father bringing up the block of wood & saying: “I think you need this.” He was more right than he could have possibly imagined.

    Mary Preston

  2. emaginette April 7, 2013 at 11:36 am #

    Simply stated, moments with my son. Hell, he’s twenty now and I know as he finds his way in the world he’ll be looking forward which is what a healthy young man should do. Towards a wife, children and future.

    The boy I knew will be gone and the moments fewer and more spread out.

  3. Linda S Moore April 15, 2013 at 6:25 pm #

    In 2009 we lost our youngest brother. I was 8 yrs his senior and practically raised him. We were very very close and I loved Robert with all my heart. He needed a liver transplant as he had cirrhosis of the liver, Hepatitis, and there were three cancer spots on his liver. He was very sick but didn’t look like he was at all. He told me that he had been out on his boat all weekend with friends(he moved to Nashville, TN yrs before) and was drinking and partying that weekend. The following Monday morning when he got up to get ready for work, he hit the floor. He said he felt this very intense pain and could not get up. His roommate came in and found him and took him to the hospital. They ran tons of tests on him and that is when all the above things were found. Robert was just barely 40 yrs old at that time and they told him if he didn’t get the transplant he would not live to see his 43rd birthday.

    My sister and I went to Nashville to go with him to have tons of tests done. They did every kind of test possible on him. We had to be there for them to go over everything that they were doing and to teach us how to be his caregivers. Without a caregiver he would not be able to get the transplant.

    Robert had been a very bad alcoholic for a lot longer than I had ever imagined. He took his first drink when he was only 14 and from there on out he drank pretty much everyday. I had no idea. He hid it that well. His dad was a very bad alcoholic also and it is hereditary. I didn’t know that until I asked one of the Drs on his case and he confirmed it. Robert told me that was one of the reasons he moved to TN when he did. He had lived there with another boy that was like a brother to all of us.

    Robert had to go for two years without drinking or smoking at all. He told me that giving up the alcohol was easier than the cigarettes. Anyway he was on the list finally and could have got the call to be at the hospital at any time. But… Robert messed up and got drunk. They found out when they did a urine test on him. Then of course he was removed from the transplant list. That was in Oct of 2008. He tried going to another big hospital in FL but of course they would not do anything since they of course got the medical records from Vanderbilt in TN.

    Our mother had given my sister to our Aunt & Uncle when she was almost 3yrs old and I had lived with our grandparents for a few years, before she made me move back home. Our mother was very abusive to me and I know that she hated me all my life, but what she did where Robert was concerned was the worse abuse anyone can do to another person. She went up to TN to stay with Robert when he started getting sick. She had not spoke to my sister or me for years and would not answer the phone when we called to check on Robert. She figured out how to turn off his cell phone too so we lost all contact with him. We decided to go and see him one weekend as we were very concerned about his health. We had heard that he was in really bad shape and was not going to be with us much longer. Anyway my sister called our cousin who is our mothers age and told her to let her know that we were coming to see him. First she said that if I came up there she was going to have me arrested for trespassing, which of course she could not do.

    My sister and her hubby and their son(who had a SUV) and me and my hubby got up early that Sat and left. It was about a three and half hr drive. It was a very dreaded trip from anxiety that my sister and I was feeling. We dreaded seeing our youngest brother in such a bad shape. But to our surprise and I do mean surprise, Robert seemed to be doing good. He was not bedridden. He was up and went outside on his balcony with us and we had the whole day of wonderful talking. Remembering wonderful times we had together and just reminiscing about all our years. Robert told us that our mother had kept him so doped up that he was not able to do anything. Not anything… But when she knew that we was coming she had started backing off of the meds so much. Now Robert was in really bad shape but he certainly didn’t look like he was at deaths door by any means. We made some wonderful memories that day too. Took pictures and just enjoyed our visit. Our mother never came out of her room once while we were there. Not that any of us cared.

    Robert seemed to be getting a bit tired so we did our goodbyes and got big hugs and kisses and promised to call each other. We told Robert how we tried to call but she would not answer and had his cell turned off. He said he would talk to her about that.

    Three days after we got back home our baby brother passed away. Our mother had him cremated and his ashes brought back to AL to be put in a tombstone. She had a graveside ceremony for him. No obit was put in the paper and we were not told about his passing. A woman from our Church stopped by the office to pay her respects for our loss and that is how we found out. I miss Robert so much and I do wonder if she overdosed him. I will wonder about that for the rest of my life and will never know. Just seemed so strange to me that he was doing so good and then was gone three days later. The painful thing was not getting any closure. I miss Robert so much. Before he got so sick we talked on the phone every evening unless something else was going on to keep us from it.

    I miss him so much and wish so bad that we could have got the closure of that final goodbye that most people get when they lose a loved one, at the service. It was unforgivable what she did. I am so glad that we did go and see him when we did though. It was a beautiful day and we was able to sit outside and visit just about the whole day. Then exactly 11 months to the day our brother who was 13 months older than me passed away and she did the same thing with him. Never let us know. It is sad when a mother hates you so bad that she will not even let you know when your own siblings pass away but at least with Robert we got a nice visit. With Dennis there was nothing. He came home from out of town laid down on the couch and after a few weeks in the hospital he left us too. We never even knew he was back in town, sick or that he had passed away. We did find out eventually obviously but it was so heartbreaking when we did. We could have gone to see him. Let him know that we loved him. Anything.. But she stole that from us both and I won’t ever forgive her for what she did.

    This is a very sad time of year for me and I feel so sad. I loved my brothers so much and there is a long history of abuse from my mother, but to do what she did is worse than any of the pain that I felt as a child. I miss both of my brothers and wish that Dennis would have known that I would have been there for him had I known he was so sick. I would have gone to see him since he had been out of town for so long but to lose him and then find it out months later hurts so much.

    I guess what I am saying here is that you should always be kind to people. Our mother could have been kind enough to have let us know that our brothers had passed away. She could have had someone call us and tell us about their services. But in choosing not too she was being so cruel and selfish.

    I loved both of my brothers with all my heart. I know that they both knew that but I won’t ever get to tell them that again. I miss them and I know that they are both out of pain now and I am thankful for that, but not getting closure sure does a number on a person. I have grieved for them so much.

    I don’t know if this fits exactly what you was looking for dear Bette but it is something that matters most to me. Closure when you lose a loved one…. Without it you feel so empty and lost inside…


  1. AUDIO - Indie Author Interview: Bette Lee Crosby "What Matters Most" - May 30, 2013

    […] its best, fiction requires the reader to confront difficult questions. In Bette Lee Crosby’s novel, the question […]

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