Newtown resident C.J. Golden, the author of Tao of the Defiant Woman and Tao Girls Rule, will be at C.H. Booth Library on Monday, March 24, at 7 pm, for a book talk and presentation about her newest book.
Reflections From Beyond: Sharing A Message of Hope, Peace, and Kindness was released February 12, and is a book that carries a message given to her from an unexpected source, in an unexpected way.
Serendipity plays a big part of most people’s lives, Ms Golden believes, and messages are always being shared; not everyone is aware or heeds the messages, however.
For Ms Golden, the message for Reflections From Beyond came to her when she was not even looking to write another book. “The book came to me,” she said.
Following her bicyclist husband, Joe Golden, and his friend in a support vehicle last May, the group stopped for the night in Cape Charles, Va. It was an unusual spot to stop, she said, as Virginia Beach was the next scheduled stop and could have easily been reached that day. But the friend had, for whatever reason, booked a hotel for the night in Cape Charles.
The Goldens got to talking with innkeepers Tracy and Alice LaCroix as they checked in, and found that the couple had been on the job only six weeks.
“We just asked the usual questions you might — where are you from?” she said.
Tracy LaCroix’s answer caught Ms Golden off guard. He was from New Hampshire, but had lost his job there, and moved to Springfield, Mass.
“That’s where I died,” he said.
It turned out that following heart surgery, Mr LaCroix’s heart had stopped. After extraordinary efforts, he was brought back, one and a half hours after he had flat-lined. Later interviews with his doctors at Bay State Hospital did not fully explain why the doctors felt compelled to go above and beyond to save the man, she said, outside of the fact that at only 50 years of age, they felt he was too young to die.
It is Mr LaCroix’s recollection of his experience in that hour and a half afterworld that Ms Golden focuses on in her book, as well as the message he brought back.
A God-like voice gave him the choice to stay bathed in the bright, peaceful light he had come to, or to return to his earthly life to finish his life’s work.
It was not immediately that he understood his life’s work was to spread the message he had received: There is peace and beauty in Heaven, beyond our expectations; that our duty on earth is to practice kindness every day; and that God is a God of choice. He did not know how he was going to do that.
“God might put opportunities in our way every day, but it is up to us to do the best we can with them,” said Ms Golden.
She believes that the answer to why they ended up at that particular hotel was answered. When Mr LaCroix found out that the Goldens were from Newtown, “That’s why you’re here,” he told her.
Spreading a message of kindness resonated with Ms Golden, just months out from the tragedy of 12/14. “But [Mr LaCroix} had no way of knowing where we were from when we started talking and he shared his story,” she said.
Further conversation led her to believe that he should publish his story as a book. Not being a writer, Mr LaCroix asked Ms Golden to take on the task of helping him share his message.
“His story fascinated me on so many different levels,” said Ms Golden. “This experience changed him. He had made some bad choices in life. People might say it was a dream or a hallucination. But a dream or hallucination,” she said, “is not life changing.”
In the short five months it took her to write the book, she said she had learned a great deal about near death experiences and associations.
“It has been a life changing experience for me, as well,” said Ms Golden, who had never before spoken with anyone about near death experiences. “Since I started writing this book, though, more and more people are talking to me about it. We take our paths in life, and we are given choices,” she said. Her path led her to Cape Charles, Va., and Tracy LaCroix. It is an intersection of lives that she hopes has resulted in a book that will give readers a sense of peace.
Ms Golden will show a brief video of a conversation with Mr LaCroix at the March 24 presentation.
“I hope people who read the book will find hope and that it will give us peace about the end of life experience. If we can believe,” she said, “that’s helpful.”
Reflections From Beyond: Sharing A Message of Hope, Peace, and Kindness can be purchased at amazon.com or at smile.amazon.com, where customers can choose to donate ½ percent of the purchase price to a charity of choice.
“I hope that people will choose Healing Hearts Center of Danbury,” said Ms Golden, who is donating $1 of every book sold to support Healing Hearts.
“I felt a tremendous responsibility to get this book out there, for Tracy and for Healing Hearts,” Ms Golden said. “There’s a lot packed into a very little book.”