Often when children are growing up, they can ask questions that are sometimes difficult to answer. In an attempt to respond to her grandchildren’s questions about their own aunt, Mary Lou Faircloth has just published a children’s book entitled “When Will I See Aunt Carole?”
Faircloth has been an English teacher at Clinton High School for nearly 40 years. She and her husband, attorney Wilbert Faircloth, had three daughters. The youngest, Paula Carole Faircloth, passed away at the age of 28, from a congenital heart condition.
“Carole was our clown and funny girl,” Faircloth said during an interview earlier this week. “Today, when we get sad, all we have to do is think of something funny she did or said and we go from sad to glad. Carole loved children and always told her two older sisters to hurry up and have children so she could be an aunt. My only regret is that Carole never got a chance to be an aunt.”
The author shared that she now has four grandchildren, three girls and a boy, ranging in age from 8 to 11.
“Shortly after Carole died, the grandchildren came. I think Carole must have sent them. They came once a year for four years,” said Faircloth with a chuckle.
The Faircloth grandchildren would see pictures of Carole and always heard the family talking about her so the question often came up, “When will I see aunt Carole?” That is why Faircloth decided to write her book.
“The grandchildren wanted to know why they couldn’t see her. I thought that there might be other children that are facing the same questions regarding someone with whom they were acquainted that had passed away. That is why I decided to write the book, and I hope that it has, and will, answer many of the questions they might have about heaven and life after death,” stressed the author.
Faircloth stated that the book, while simple ,approaches life after death in a way that people of various beliefs can utilizethe to help them find answers to the loss of loved ones.
CHS art teacher Michael Ray was the book’s illustrator. Even after Faircloth finished the book, she waited five years for Ray to illustrate it.
“Michael has just done a marvelous job with the illustrations. I gave him free range as to how to illustrate the book; all I did was share photos of our family so he could use their likeness if he so chose,” explained Faircloth.
A review written on the Amazon.com website calling himself, Distant Echo, remarked on Faircloth’s book and its illustrations.
“M.L. Faircloth’s “When Will I See Aunt Carole?” is a children’s book that gingerly covers the topic of death for younger readers. Though we do not know what happened to the child’s Aunt Carole, we see through young Mina’s eyes that her family thinks of her often and decorates a tree in her honor on her birthday every year.When Mina asks her Mother, “When will I see Aunt Carole?,” her mother sits down and explains that Aunt Carole is in heaven. Mina wonders what, exactly, Aunt Carole does in heaven, and her mother tells her all of the things Aunt Carole loved to do in life that she is probably doing in heaven, too. She also reminds Mina that Aunt Carole is watching over her when she is happy and is proud of her when she is good. She tells her that if she is as good as she can be, one day they will all be reunited in heaven with Aunt Carole.”
The reviewer continued by saying, “The colorful and beautiful illustrations by Michael Ray give children a visual representation of the story, enabling them to further process the idea of what may happen after death. An excellent book for any parent to read with a child, “When Will I See Aunt Carole?” is sure to spark important discussions among many parents and their children.”
The book just came out the last week of October and is available at www.faircloth.shorturl.com in both paperback and hard back editions. It is also available as an e-Book.
Faircloth and Ray will have a book signing Sunday, Nov. 18, from 2 until 4 p.m., at the Victor Small House and they will also be signing books at the Clinton High School Bazaar which will be Dec. 8 and 9. The book will also be available at Matthews Cards & Gifts.
“I feel this book can engender good conversations between parents and children as they discuss their beliefs in regards to life after death and one someone they care about passing away,” remarked Faircloth.