This blog was featured on 08/27/2016
Written by
Lene Fogelberg
August 2015
Written by
Lene Fogelberg
August 2015


I have done this before. Counted the days and weeks to an important event. One spring many years ago I counted the moments until my wedding, filled with thoughts of pearl-embroidered silk and waltzing with my dear groom to be. While stroking my heavy belly, singing to my unborn baby, I counted the days until I would meet my first and then my second child. And now, I am counting the weeks and days until my first book is published, and experiencing the familiar bubbles in my stomach and the overpowering feeling of change and grateful disbelief: is this really happening?

I’m reminded of another countdown in my life, of an altogether different manner. That time, I was not looking forward in excited anticipation but futilely trying to hold onto each passing day as it faded into twilight and slipped from my fingers. A countdown when I looked at the number on the calendar, wondering: will that be my last day? Looking at the date was like staring into the blackness of a vast night sky, where will I be that day? On this date was written “heart surgery” and after this date, there were no more marks, no plans, no appointments, only an unwritten question mark, that gave all the days leading up to it a new weight, tying me closer to all that I loved.

The dreaded day came and went and I survived. This is what it taught me. Every day is a big event. To wake up, open my eyes, feel my scarred heart beat its steady rhythm, hear my family get ready for school and work and to smile to myself: I am here. Nevertheless, I still count the days until September 15 when I will wake up to declare: I am here and today my story goes out into the world.


Lene Fogelberg is an award-winning poet and a double open-heart surgery survivor. Born in Sweden, she has lived in the US and now lives in Asia. She Writes Press will publish her first book Beautiful Affliction, A Memoir, on September 15, 2015. It is available for preorder on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. To learn more, visit her website:, Facebook author page,Goodreads or Twitter.

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  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thank you Alicia for your kind words! <3

  • Alicia M. Smith

    Congratulations, Lene!  You must be extremely elated ~ so much to be proud of and thankful for.  Thank you for sharing your story with us!

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thank you so much Pat! Warmest wishes to you <3

  • Pat Roa-Perez

    Congratulations, Lene!  Your story resonates with my current life situation so I look forward to reading Beautiful Affliction!    

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thank you so much Roselee and Peggy!

  • Looking forward to reading Beautiful Affliction! 

  • Congratulations, Lene! Sounds like an extraordinary story and an extraordinary memoir. I'm so happy for you that it is going "out into the world."

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Yay, thanks Barbara! <3 

  • Barbara Stark-Nemon

    Looking forward, Lene!! Very excited for you (and for me when I get to read Beautiful Affliction

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thank you so much Veronica! <3 

  • Waiting with anticipation, Lene. Congratulations, #WarriorWoman! xx

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Wow, awesome Diana! Thanks for telling! :) 

  • Diana Y. Paul Writing

    A major comet is supposed to cross the sky that night--a heavenly shout-out to your memoir!  Celebrate with the cosmos!

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thanks Michelle, this is what I love with She Writes, a supportive team of women writers learning together and cheering for each other!

  • Michelle Cox

    Good luck, Lene!  I'm so excited for you.  It's wonderful to have a group of women go through the "birthing" process before me (and all the other Spring 2016 authors) to be able to offer tips, advice and support!  Thanks for sharing!


  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thanks so much, Joan! Appreciate your kind comment! <3 

  • Joan Z. Rough

    Congratulations and best wishes for much success!

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thank you so much Tracy! Yes, seemed like the book got lost on the way to Japan… Sorry about that, but thanks a million for wanting to blurb it and for your support! Warm wishes for continuous success with amazing The Good Shufu!

  • Tracy Slater

    Congrats, Lene! Sorry it never reached me in time to blurb it, but wishing you much success with your launch!

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thanks so much, Toi! Appreciate your kind comment!

    Patricia, it's so true. Perspectives change! Thank you for your beautiful reminder.

    Great to be your pub-sister on September 15 Jeannine! A day to celebrate!

  • Jeannine Atkins

    You are right that every day is precious. But Sept. 15 gets extra bonus points!

  • Patricia Robertson

    Good luck on your book launch! Yes, some countdowns we look forward to, others we do not. Isn't it amazing how staring death in the face can help us wake up to what is important in life and live each day more fully.

  • Toi Thomas

    Congratulations on your release. I'm sure it will be a huge success. It sounds like an amazing story. Thank you for sharing this.

  • Lene Fogelberg Writing

    Thank you so much Stacey! <3

  • Stacey Aaronson

    I am SO excited for your book to come out, Lene! It's a beautiful story and one I'm sure many people will be moved by. xo, Stacey