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Author Katie Mettner

How Inherited Love has become MY Story

When I first wrote Inherited Love back in 2016 I was just trying to tell the story about a woman who had inherited her grandmother's dog most unexpectedly and how that led her to love. Cinn is one of those characters that settles into your heart and never leaves. She's vulnerable but strong. She takes care of her own business, even when that business is painful and debilitating. Cinn has Crohn's disease, which is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes pain, scarring, bleeding, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, inability to gain weight, and it often requires surgery and immunosuppressant medications. I had wanted to write a story about this for some time, but I really struggled to find a way to do it that drew the reader into it in a way that didn't make it something no one wanted to read about. Then I met Cinn. She just settled into my mind and heart and wouldn't let me go until I told her story. Little did I know when I wrote it four years ago that parts of her story would also become mine. 

Cinnamon Mabel Dalton always struggled to fit in. A musical savant at an early age, Cinn’s life was anything but easy. After a failed marriage and broken heart, she worried she would never find someone who understood her devotion to her craft, and her family. Then her Grandma Mable passed away, she inherited a two-hundred-pound Saint Bernard, and her whole life changed.

Dr. Foster Kern, the director of the Little Ivywood Humane Society, spent hours with Mable Dalton being regaled with stories about her granddaughter, Cinn. Suddenly face-to-face with the woman he had heard so much about, he realized Mabel didn’t do her justice. Cinn’s exotic looks and giant heart were exactly what he’d been searching for, but he truly believed a woman like Cinn would never be interested in a guy like him.

Cinn and Foster team up to protect her grandmother’s legacy, but neither of them could predict how quickly they would discover a mutual happiness they’d both been searching for. When fate unwittingly reveals Cinn’s hidden truth, she has two choices; trust her heart to Foster or run away from a lifetime of love.

It was shortly after I wrote this series that I was diagnosed with gastroparesis. That is a condition where the nerve that makes your stomach grind and digest food as well as move it through the stomach into the small intestine stops working properly. There are a myriad of reasons why it can happen and the doctors don't know for sure why I got it as I'm not diabetic or have any of the other conditions generally linked to it. But, for whatever reason, the nerve stopped working and I could no longer digest food properly. The years went on and by 2019 I was only eating baby food and yogurt. When I was diagnosed my weight was 209 pounds. When I finally sought help this summer, I weighed 113 pounds and the years of poor nutrition had caught up to me. Since I am an amputee, and they suggest you get a new leg made every time you lose 10 pounds, this was becoming a serious problem. So, despite being in the middle of a pandemic, I decided I couldn't wait any longer. I HAD to do something. After consulting with my local doctors, I was referred to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester. I'm extremely fortunate that we live only a few hours away, so that made the trip easier overall. There it was decided that I was not getting the dietary nutrition necessary and if we didn't do something, I would not live to see all of my kids graduate from college. A nasogastric feeding tube was placed through my nose, stomach, and into my intestines. I had to do a two-week trial with it to make sure I could tolerate tube feedings into my intestines (since my stomach is the problem, they had to go directly into my intestines.) I was fortunate that the trial went well (besides the horrible hell of having that tube in my throat. I've gone through many things, but that was the most miserable I've been in recent history!). On August 11 I returned to Mayo and had the nasal tube replaced with a permanent J-tube. This tube goes directly into my intestines through my abdomen and every night, I connect the formula to the tube. Since it is in my intestines and you can't use gravity feeding like you can with the stomach, I have a pump that pumps in the formula at certain number of ML per hour. I run it through the night while I sleep and when I wake in the morning, everything is done, I unhook and go about my business the rest of the day (and you don't even get hungry!)

This is a month's supply of formula, formula bags, and my pump.

Every night I use four containers of formula.

The backpack I use to hold the pump and formula.

The bag loaded with the four containers of formula and the pump loaded in the backpack. Some people use an IV pole and hang the pump and formula on the pole at their bed at night then it runs while they sleep. Because I'm an amputee and in a wheelchair at night, that is tricky for me if I have to get up, so I always leave mine in the backpack.

A close up of the pump. It will say "load set" or "set loaded". I set my feed rate at 90 ML/hour, which means it takes just a hair over 11 hours to run the formula through the tube into my intestines. You can go up to 120 ML/hour, but I stay at 90 because it's the most comfortable for me.

Before you connect to the pump, you have to flush the tube with a syringe of warm water. The close-up image is to show the second port. The side port that juts off to the side, is a medication port. The one with the MIC* on it is to tell the user you can connect the set bag with the purple connector and you don't need the adapter. 

This is the set connected to my J-Tube. You can see the purple connector I was talking about. The pump will say running at the top and when it's pumping in formula the waterdrop drops down the pump. You can see it at the top by the 9.

Once you are hooked up and have the main compartment zipped up, you can open the smaller pouch and have access to the pump through the see-through window. This makes it easy if you need to change something when on the go or if an alarm goes off. 

Here is a simple video on how the pump is loaded (It's a faster video than I could ever make!)

How does all of this tie into Cinn's story if I don't have Crohn's disease? Good question. Cinn also has a feeding tube because she can't keep weight on due to her disease. She develops an issue with the tube (which ironically I just finished being treated for the same issue with mine. Granulation tissue is common with a feeding tube, but if left untreated, like in Cinn's case, bad things happen). Cinn's feeding tube goes into her stomach, and she uses gravity feeds for hers, but the irony of the situation really struck me this summer. Inherited Love has always been one of my top read books, and I think that's because Cinn is SO relatable, even as a musical genius with a condition that sometimes overwhelms her. Maybe, in the end, that is why she's relatable. We all have things that overwhelm us and it's nice to read a book that doesn't sugarcoat the emotions and the way being overwhelmed can affect our lives. 

Because I love Cinn, and her siblings Lorenzo and Tabitha, so much, I'm going to run Inherited Love free on Amazon from September 30 to October 4. I will also be running Inherited Light and Inherited Life for .99 each during that time. This series is a hidden gem that a lot of people miss on my dashboard for some reason. You will LOVE this series. It's about a family that struggles just like anyone's does, and each book reveals more about Cinn and Foster's progress through this thing called love and life. I hope you find a way to pick up this series whether it's through Kindle Unlimited or through the free promotion here. There is nothing I would love more than for a whole bunch of readers to fall in love with Cinn the way I did that first day I sat down to tell her story.

When Lorenzo Dalton inherited his Grandma Mabel’s BMW Coupe, he was a twenty-two-year-old kid without a care in the world. Now, two years later, his inheritance has lost its luster, and so has his life, until an old friend rolls through the doors of the Little Ivywood Humane Society.

Catalina Chavéz, a successful artist, has spent fifteen years hiding her personal demons by hiding her heart. Now, staring thirty in the face, she’s ready to relinquish her recluse status and reconnect with old friends. She just wasn’t expecting one of them to be a tall, dark, and handsome Lorenzo Dalton.

Cat and Lorenzo find they share the same taste in food, music, and dreams for their future. They also share a mutual enemy, Xavier Carellton. Threats, lies, murder, and betrayal swirl through the air of Little Ivywood, California, and neither knows friend from foe. Someone wants them dead, and they must find the killer, before the killer finds them.

Tabitha Dalton spent three years making amends to the community of Little Ivywood for her past transgressions, but those three years taught her making amends to her family would be impossible. Knowing she would never be good enough for them kept the heavy cloak of guilt and shame firmly around her shoulders, no matter how hard she tried to shed it.

Detective Noah Jonas made everything look easy, but the truth he hid was proof his life was anything but. When he first met Tabitha Dalton in his interrogation room, he immediately saw her for what she was — scared, sad, and beautifully broken. It was the rest of what he saw in her eyes that made him want to bare his soul to her.

When a woman goes missing in Little Ivywood, Noah asks Tabitha to use her psychic abilities to help them locate her before it’s too late. In return, Tabitha asks Noah to heal her heart, so she can see her own future again. Lies and discontent strip the Dalton family to the bone, but with Tabitha’s forgiveness and Noah’s determination, will the family find a way to accept love, welcome the light, and embrace life again, together?

1 comment

Dana Mason said...

Take care of yourself, Katie. We'll be needing many more books from you. <3