Pam & Paula's Book: The Most Amazing Harvest, The Man Behind the Story
The Most Amazing Harvest Website
Click here to see Beth's twin nephews in their local news
Questions for Reflection
Each episode we offer you a few prompts to think about how that day's conversation applies to you. You might pause the podcast and answer them right then and there, but if you keep a journal (Steph and Beth both do), you might find one of these PDFs useful. Choose the orientation that fits best in your journal.
Beth Demme (00:03):
Welcome to the Discovering Our Scars Podcast.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (00:06):
Where have honest conversations about things that make us different. I'm Steph.
Beth Demme (00:09):
And I'm Beth.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (00:10):
I've been in recovery for 14 years and am the author of Discovering My Scars, my memoir about my mental struggles, experiences in faith.
Beth Demme (00:16):
I'm a lawyer turned pastor who's all about self-awareness and emotional health, because I know what it's like to have neither of those things.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (00:22):
Beth and I have been friends for years. Have gone through a recovery program together, and when I wanted to start a podcast, she was the only name that came to mind as co host.
Beth Demme (00:29):
I didn't hesitate to say, "yes," because I've learned a lot from honest conversations with Steph over the years.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (00:34):
We value honest conversations and we hope you do too.
Beth Demme (00:37):
That's why we do this and why we want you to be part of what we were discussing today. On today's show we're very excited to have two special guests. We're going to have an honest conversation titled, wait, there's two of you? With our special guests, sisters Pam Bates and Paula Patty. Hi ladies.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (00:57):
And then we're going to invite you to reflect on the conversation in your own life with questions for reflection.
Beth Demme (01:02):
And this show will close with slice of life. And if you wonder what that is, stay tuned until the end. So Steph, you actually introduced me to Pam and Paula, so tell us how do you know these ladies?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (01:13):
Well, I will quickly say, and then you guys can share if you want to. But so there was an author event almost a year ago in November of last year. And you guys were sitting at a table and I walked up and I was like, "can I sit here?" And you guys were like, "of course." And I looked at one of you and I looked at the other one, I was like, Whoa, there's two of them, this is awesome. And the rest is history. We're like buddies the whole trip and had meals together and went out in the town in Nashville and that's how I know you guys.
Beth Demme (01:48):
So you guys are also published with Morgan James, the same publisher that Steph is with, right?
Beth Demme (01:54):
And your book is called The Most Amazing Harvest.
The Man Behind the Story.
Beth Demme (01:58):
The Man Behind the Story, that's right. Don't let me leave out the subtitle, that's important. And you are twin sisters, you're identical twins?
We think so.
Beth Demme (02:07):
You think so?
They didn't check or I don't know. There's been studies afterwards whether people are really identical, but we've always said we were, we look alike.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (02:19):
We can verify that.
Beth Demme (02:21):
There'll be a picture in the show notes, so you do look similar to each other. What are some of the silliest or most annoying questions that you've got throughout your life about being twins? Because I'm pretty sure Steph and I will want to ask those same questions.
Well, this is back when we were kids and we were waiting for the bus and somebody asked me, how do you know which one is which?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (02:49):
Ask you? How do you know?
I said, well, we know who we are. That was one of the silliest things. There's always people too, they think they're talking to one of us and it's the other one. And so I was shopping one time and this guy comes, I see him coming and I think he is going to ram his cart into my cart. Pretty much, that's what he does and he rams it in and he's grinning ear to ear and I have no idea who he is. He thinks I'm Paula. It turns out he didn't even know she had a twin sister, it was somebody she worked with, he didn't know she had a twin sister, so he's totally lost but it was a funny moment.
Beth Demme (03:39):
It would have been funny if you had acted like you didn't even know her, right? Like who do you think I am? What? I've never even heard of this person.
When I started working at the dentist office and Pam had worked there since high school, so she knew all the patients, and I'm at the front desk and people are coming in and of course they think I'm Pam, and then I would have to ask them what their name was. I got some really strange looks like, I've been coming here for 30 years, you don't know what my name is?
Beth Demme (04:10):
They were probably worried about you, oh no, her memory is slipping.
There's something wrong with her.
Beth Demme (04:17):
So we have a small town just west of here where I used to serve as a pastor and there's a little donut shop there. It's like a gathering place for the town, you got to go and you got to get your donuts. Well, I didn't realize that it was owned by twin brothers, and so I would go in and have this great experience, so friendly, Oh my gosh, how many donuts do you want this morning? And just really upbeat. And then some days I would go in and the person would be really grumpy and it looked like exactly the same person, and I'm like he's really having an off day. But it was this consistent pattern of happy and grumpy, and happy and grumpy, and then finally somebody told me that it was twins, and that one was the happy twin and one was the grumpy twin.
We're both happy twins.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (04:57):
I was going to say... Okay, good. That's how I knew you guys. So something that's interesting is you guys, born and still live in a small town right?
Yes. I moved away for three years. Lived in Tennessee for a while, and in Jacksonville, Illinois, but then came back home.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (05:16):
So you're the rebellious twin?
She was the bad girl.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (05:23):
I could see that. Tell us more.
Not need to go there.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (05:29):
Did you leave because you just wanted to... Was it that you felt-
My husband, he got a different job and so that took us that way and then we worked our way back.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (05:41):
What was it like being away from Pam for all that time?
We pretty much talked every day on the phone and they'd come [crosstalk 00:05:50] probably every other month, if not every month they'd come visit, or we'd come home. We were coming home a lot. My husband's father was ill and so we were, at least once a month we'd be home to see him so...
And they'd stay at my house, so that was good quality time together, so that was good.
Beth Demme (06:13):
Pam, I know that you are widowed. Carl passed away, your husband, that's part of what this, The Most Amazing Harvest story is about, but when Carl was alive, where your husbands good friends?
They were. They really did a lot, everything together because we were always together. And so, when we would be somewhere, they'd be together, so yes, they were very close.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (06:36):
And that's interesting, so my assumption with twins is that you guys are connected at the hip. You're always together. You never feel alone. Is that accurate?
That is accurate, I guess.
Yes. I know twins who aren't like that and it's sad. Because, I think you got your soulmate right there. Been together since the beginning.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (07:01):
Exactly. Do you have other siblings?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (07:04):
Are you as close to them?
Well, we are. We're all close as a family, but I know that they probably have felt a little disconnected because we're so connected and so we feel bad for them, but they're still siblings. We still love them and-
We're close. Just not as close.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (07:25):
Do you intentionally try to spend separate time with them? Is that something that's important to have the individual time or are you always together?
We have time just with them. Separate from each other too.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (07:40):
Do you have the same likes and dislikes? Is there a food that you both hate, a food that you both love?
Pretty much. We just talked about this. We went out to lunch yesterday and pretty much every time order the same thing. One of us will give the order and the other one will say, give me that too. Or if there's two things we want to try, one will get one thing and then we get half of each thing, or we share a meal. If we both want the same thing we'll just get half of it. But pretty much I think food wise we're right together on all of that.
And we have the same group of friends. There's 12 of us, high school friends that still have girls trips and we're usually the ones that plan the trips and so we stay connected with them as well. So that makes it easy too that we have the same group of friends, we're not doing different things and...
Stephanie Kostopoulos (08:45):
And you work at the same place. Well, you work at different [crosstalk 00:08:49]
It probably sounds crazy doesn't it? Aren't you sick of her?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (08:54):
I see you work at the same place. Do you work for the same company, but now you're in different offices?
Two different offices now, Yes.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (09:00):
But you didn't always work there because Pam you worked there from when you were in high school, is that what you said?
Yes. So I've been there, oh my gosh, 41 years I think it's craziness. And then Paula came probably was it 10 years ago?
13 years ago.
13 years ago. And so up until about two years ago, we were both in the same office in Gabber and she was at the front desk and I was just in my own office and then I moved now to a separate corporate office.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (09:36):
Nice. So since you live in a small town, does everyone in the town know you guys that you're twins? Because I know you told the story about being hit in the grocery store and they didn't know, so does everyone know now? Or are there still people that don't know?
I think most people know us and know of us and so they know we're twins. That was where she had got a job in a town about 15 miles away, so that's where I didn't know him and...
Stephanie Kostopoulos (10:06):
So how many people are in your town where you both live?
2,700 the sign says.
Beth Demme (10:14):
Who's responsible for updating the sign. We're going to need to follow up on that and see, has it been updated recently? Are they sure?
We used to be 31 and now it's 27, so we're losing people.
Beth Demme (10:25):
You're not adding? How about when you guys had kids? Did they add to the number?
Probably 10 years or so, I don't know.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (10:34):
Do any of your kids live in town?
Yes, both of my kids. My daughter, actually her and her family live across the street from me and so we have a little cul de sac that's ours. And then my son lives a few blocks from me, but he is engaged and going to be moving only about 30 miles away, but he'll be moving to where she lives so...
Beth Demme (10:58):
Well, congratulations on that. That's exciting.
I know, I'm so excited.
I have a daughter who lives about 12 minutes away, but she works here in Gabber at the school, she's a teacher. And then my son is in, well, he's by La Crosse, Wisconsin, so that's a little jaunt.
Beth Demme (11:20):
So neither of you have twins?
I had twins. My first daughter was a twin and the twin only lived for, Dina was her name, only lived for three hours. They were very premature and it was funny just the other day I was cleaning out a closet and I found the sonogram picture of the two babies together. And I didn't even remember that I'd had that and so I gave that to Heather to put in a little frame and that was her twin sister.
Beth Demme (11:58):
That's special. That's so great that you found that, so she can have that little memento. I'm sure it was hard to see it, but also heartwarming to see it too.
She was real.
Beth Demme (12:11):
Stephanie Kostopoulos (12:14):
Were they fraternal or identical? Did they know?
They were fraternal because there was two bags of water.
You do have another daughter that lives at home, she's in college.
Did I not mention her?
She would be so mad.
Can you please edit that part.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (12:35):
So how many kids do you have Paul?
I have three.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (12:39):
Three kids, okay.
Bryn is at home and she's attending college right now.
Beth Demme (12:47):
Is she doing it online?
She's doing online and she just started working at the dentist office too.
Beth Demme (12:56):
She's just temporary. We have a girl leaving for maternity leave, so she's going to do that while she's gone.
Beth Demme (13:06):
Maybe this dentist office in Gabber should be our backup plan.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (13:09):
Beth Demme (13:09):
If it doesn't work out, we'll just call and be like, hey, we need a job.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (13:13):
Its very exciting. And they told me all about it when we were in Nashville. I think it's the coolest thing, because you have multiple dentist offices.
Yes. Seven offices in different communities and they're all really pretty much small communities, and so we have that hometown family oriented feeling in our offices, so it's a good company and good people.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (13:42):
I love that. That's awesome. Pam, how many kids do you have?
I have just two.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (13:45):
You have two. Okay.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (13:47):
Got you. Okay. There was a story recently I don't know if you guys saw this, but there was a story recently where identical twins, females and males married each other.
Beth Demme (13:57):
It's a little disturbing I'm not going to lie, [crosstalk 00:13:59].
Stephanie Kostopoulos (13:58):
And then they're both having kids at the same time and those kids are going to be biological siblings.
Beth Demme (14:05):
That's what they claim.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (14:06):
That's what they say.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (14:09):
Is that how it works?
They've said that our... And this is funny, our daughters look alike. And we don't see it as much as other people, but people confuse them and think they're the other, the other one. And I think they told us that our kids are close to siblings, as close as not just cousins.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (14:33):
Are your kids really connected? Like more than kids of non twins?
Yeah. And we kept them connected, like I said, we would take trips when she wasn't living here and so they grew up as siblings. They were together enough as, well, not as close as that, but a lot. They were close and felt like that was... And we had them close, so Paula had a daughter, year later I had a daughter. Paula had a son, year later I had a son. Well, then when she had Bryn, Bryn kept saying, when are you going to have [inaudible 00:15:13]. She was 40 when she had her and I'm like uh...
Stephanie Kostopoulos (15:19):
You probably saw her going through it you're like, nope, I'm good. I'm done.
You have to be there and then walk away.
Beth Demme (15:29):
Is there a big age difference then between Bryn and Heather?
Beth Demme (15:34):
Heather was 20, Jake was 16 and then Bryn came along. So she's our extra blessing.
Beth Demme (15:44):
That's right. Special blessing. That's right. I'm the youngest in my family by, so there's me and then my sister who's 10 years older, and then a brother who's 12 years older and then my oldest brother. He's passed away now but he was 14 years older, so I actually know the joy that Bryn gets because it's like, I always felt like I shouldn't, I don't know what her experience is, but my experience was, I was an only child, but with all of these adults really pouring love into me, and so it fully supported by precociousness and I always really felt loved and safe. I had all these people on my side, so that was good. It's a good thing.
I just said something to somebody the other day. I said Bryn grew up with five moms between her sisters and her cousins.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (16:28):
Exactly. Do you guys mind, I'm just curious. Do you mind saying how old you are?
We are going to be 59 in November.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (16:36):
That's so awesome. And I was there with you for your 58th birthday.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (16:41):
In November, that's so cool.
Beth Demme (16:44):
Well, if you have a big party for your 60th, you have to put the word out, invite us.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (16:49):
We should be over the COVID by then [crosstalk 00:16:51]
We have a girlfriend that lives in England and none of us have been there to visit her like 20 years. And so we all said about five years ago, start saving your money, we're going to England to see Angie. That's the plan, as far as COVID [crosstalk 00:17:11] that we're planning in June, so everybody will be turning 60 this next year and so that's when we're going.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (17:17):
That's awesome. How many are in your girlfriend group?
There's 12 of us.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (17:23):
Not everybody goes to every time, but we've had multiple ones where I think at least 11 are always there.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (17:31):
Awesome. Do you have a name for your group?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (17:34):
Yes. I love it. I have a group of friends from high school. We call ourselves the 10 ladies, so there's 10 of us. I love it.
Beth Demme (17:44):
Super creative. There's 10 of you. The 10 ladies.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (17:47):
And ladies, it's just a fun word. Pam, I have a question for you. This is a really important question. What is the most annoying thing that Paula does?
Now you're going to get us going. I honestly, I can't think of anything.
Beth Demme (18:07):
Don't worry. Paula can think of something. Paula, what's the most annoying thing Pam does?
She will think of something. I'm probably more annoying than she. I really yell at you about... We're so much alike, if we say something's annoying, then we probably do it too.
Beth Demme (18:24):
It's good self awareness, I like it.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (18:29):
That is interesting. If something annoys you and the other person, because that's something I do personally, if something annoys me in someone I reflect on myself and say, wait, do I do that? Maybe that's something I need to change. Does that happen with you guys?
Yeah, definitely. And not just with people, but from all across the board. I'm like, look at that.
The whole plank in your eye thing.
Beth Demme (19:00):
Let's talk about the book that you guys wrote. I'm really interested in the fact that you collaborated and that you wrote it together, because I think that in my mind collaboration is harder than just doing it yourself, so I want to hear about that. Whose idea was it to write the book? Whose idea was it to write it together? Tell us about your process.
Honestly, it was God's idea to write the book. He was telling me the first year after Carl passed away that, tell his story, tell his story. And I kept trying to ignore him because I don't know how to write a book and I wouldn't have the first thing, idea how to do that. And when I realized he wasn't going to give up, I thought, okay, well, if I'm going to do this I need help, because... And Paula had had some writing experience, she used to work for The Gabber News and write a story about people who had left Gabber, where are they now, and she would give their story. And so I called her and I said, so I'm feeling like we have to do this, tell his story and so she agreed to help.
And honestly, as we went through the whole process and the whole journey, I don't know that I ever would have done that by myself. The fact that we had someone to talk about and split the things that we had to get done and do was huge. I really don't know that I would have finished if I hadn't had some help. And so we worked well together.
Little did she know I had always wanted to write a book. And had dreamed of that, had prayed about that and had never, I'd say, God, I want to write a book, but what should I write about? And never, ever felt passionate enough about a subject to start. And so when she said that it was like, God was just handed me this dream come true gift. And so it was amazing. And working together, I know that there were times where we would irritate each other, or get mad about something and it's so funny we had a conversation with a friend of ours about this, but we'll yell at each other and say shut up, or whatever and then five minutes later, we get past it and just start acting like everything's fine again.
We don't ever really apologize. We just move on.
Forgiveness is pretty quick.
Beth Demme (21:40):
Nice. It's woven into your relationship. It's just automatically given. That's sweet.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (21:46):
So Paula, something that was really interesting that you said was you had this dream and desire to write a book, but Pam never knew. So that's interesting to me, are there things that you keep from each other that I didn't think that would be a thing.
Well, I guess, yeah. Maybe we do have. It was a dream, but not... I don't know why I didn't never tell her.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (22:10):
Were you surprised Pam, when she said that she had always wanted to do this?
Yeah. When she did the article in the paper I knew she always enjoyed that. And so maybe deep down, I did know that she would be open to taking this on. But no, not that she ever, that was a dream of hers. I just knew she enjoyed it when she did that.
Beth Demme (22:37):
Maybe, maybe I didn't share it because I didn't think it was ever going to come true.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (22:44):
Actually I had always wanted to write a book as well. And same thing like you Paula, I never knew what it would be. I didn't see myself as a writer and I was like, I don't know why this is in me. But it was the same thing. It was this God was tugging on me and saying, this is going to happen and in time you're going to figure out what that is. And that's what happened with me as well. And I never told anybody that I wanted to write a book, I had this deep desire. Because, it almost felt like you said, well, it's never going to happen, why would I tell people? I don't want people to know, and then be like, you never wrote your book. It's now that I've written a book, those things that I have these dreams, or desires for that I'm afraid to say, I'm going to say them now. We actually are doing an episode about-
Beth Demme (23:28):
I was going to say.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (23:28):
We're doing an episode about dreams next week I think. Because we need to say these, we need to be proud of them and not be ashamed. These things that are tugging on us-
Beth Demme (23:38):
What happened if-
[inaudible 00:23:40] accountable too. Accountable to the people you tell, and yourself to move forward and do that thing.
Beth Demme (23:46):
Exactly. I think that's why I don't always tell people my dreams, because I don't really want to be held accountable. But the idea behind the episode is, what if all your dreams really came true. All of these audacious ideas you have for the things that you want to do, what if you really accomplish them? How would that change you? How would that change your community? I'm looking forward to all of our conversations. We have a lot of them mapped out, but I am looking forward to that one too.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (24:09):
All right, sorry to interrupt. You can ask your question now.
Beth Demme (24:12):
What was your process? How long did it take you to write the book?
Two and a half years. I know people write books in way less time than that, but we would take trips. And that was our focused work on the book trip, and we went to some amazing places and it was a beautiful journey. That was a beautiful journey as well as anything else.
And there was a time when we got to the end chapters, there was a lot of procrastination going on. Every time we would talk, we really need to work on this, and it's like, yeah, yeah, because those were hard chapters to think about and to put back, but I'm so glad that we finally did it. And I think Paula had said one time, Rome was where we decided, okay, God was telling us, finish the project. And so when we came back we focused on getting it done, but it was a healing process too. Writing those last chapters about the end was healing for sure.
Beth Demme (25:29):
For folks who haven't read the book yet, Carl was a survivor of childhood cancer. And then as an adult had a different form of cancer and he decided when he was told that he was terminal, he opted not to pursue treatment. So you had this time of closure with him, and during that time is when The Most Amazing Harvest happened. When you're talking about having a time to heal and having a time to process those emotions, that's what I imagine you're referring to, the closure of that chapter of your life and the chapters of the book.
Beth Demme (26:13):
So you went to Rome for one of your writing trips?
Yeah. That was on our bucket list and it was actually... We were going to go, twice we tried to go, the first time it wasn't meant to be because we signed up and we had our deposit in and they canceled the trip because there weren't enough people. [inaudible 00:26:36] this organization that we were going to go through, and so we're like, well, that wasn't meant to be. And the next year we were both were not feeling it, don't feel like doing that. And then the beginning of 2018, and we went in November of 2018 for our birthday. When we saw that it was on our birthday, and this dynamic Catholic is who we went with, and we knew they wouldn't be canceling the trip because they do pilgrimages all the time and so we signed up and it was the perfect time to go, but that was in 2018 and then we came home and started finishing the...
Stephanie Kostopoulos (27:21):
When you were in Rome, did you have a favorite spot?
Assisi, quiet little town. I don't know, it's peaceful there. You just felt peace in that space, in that place.
Beth Demme (27:33):
Was it the same for you, Paula? Did you love being in Assisi?
That was my favorite. St. Francis and his whole story is so amazing. And there was St. Clare his friend and that's my youngest daughter's confirmation Saint, St. Clare. Actually her name was going to be Clare and she was born. Clare was my girl's name and she was born and I looked at her and said, her name is not Clare, somebody figure out what it is.
So Bryn was a name that I had in the very beginning and my daughter and Tara, Pam's daughter had mixed it and said now, and so we've moved on. Well, they're the ones that brought it back and said, how about Bryn?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (28:26):
Where you guys in the delivery room for each others births?
Pam actually, when she was having Tara, I was in labor.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (28:38):
So, probably not.
Well, no. I mean, I was having labor pains. I wasn't having a baby, I was just having labor pains along with her.
She went to the doctor and said-
I went to the doctor and said, I'm having these cramps and I said, now my twin sister is in the process of having a baby. Do you think that could have something to do with that? And he goes, well, it could. And she had Tara and they quit.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (29:06):
Oh my goodness.
Beth Demme (29:07):
That's amazing. So I have twin nephews, they're fraternal twins. And they graduated from high school two or three years ago. And there were several sets of twins in their class. I think there were three or four sets. So the news came and did a story about how it's so incredible that we had this graduating class with so many twins and they asked my nephews, what's the weirdest question you get or whatever. And so the one twin says, I don't like it when people ask me if they hit him or I feel it. Because of course I don't feel what he feels, he's his own person, but you're telling me that actually you can have these sympathetic pains.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (29:42):
Has it happened any other time? Where one's-
She never gets my pain?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (29:51):
So it only goes one way.
I don't think it's ever happened any other time.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (29:58):
Do you guys both get sick at the same time? If you have a cold or the flu or something?
Not really, No.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (30:05):
Where are some of the other places you went on your writing trips.
Holy Hill, Wisconsin. Tell them the story about Holy Hill, Pam.
Okay, so Holly Hill is a Basilica up on a hilltop in Wisconsin. You look out over the countryside and it's a beautiful place. And that's when Paula had decided, so the book is told with the concept that Carl's guardian angel is telling the story. So he was there from the beginning to the end, and so that was how she was telling the story. And so we get there and I'm reading her section about Gus, that's his name. Gus is telling the story and then she had named my guardian angel.
And when I read it, I said, okay, well, this is all great. I love this concept and what you've done here. I said, but that is not my guardian angel's name. And so she says, well, then you better figure it out. So the next day we go to mass and the mass is being said for a man named Sam. And when I heard it, I thought, Oh, that might be my guardian angels name. So I said a little prayer and asked for a sign and said, okay, God, if I hear the name Sam again today, I know that's his name. So we're driving along and we can't remember what we were talking about, but I said, "I don't like that." And Paula said, "you don't like that CMIM?" "Did you just say Sam?" And she's like, "yeah." And surprised that it even came out of her mouth, and I said, well, then that's my guardian angel's name. So that was a fun little story in that space. Probably should have them listed somewhere.
We should write those down.
Beth Demme (31:50):
I like this concept though, because sometimes stuff will say to me, I have this idea for a book. Let's write a book together. And I like the idea of saying, okay, but it has to involve travel. We have to take writing trips. I like this. I think I'm going to make that a condition.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (32:05):
We can write a book, but this, this and that.
Beth Demme (32:07):
But I'm going to need to go to Rome.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (32:11):
I traveled for my book as well, but I traveled to very boring places so that I was bored and only focused on the book. So that was my thing. Although towards the end, when I had my edit done, I went to Epcot at Disney and I edited the book at Epcot, which was fun. But I also told myself, you can't do any rides and you have to focus on this. And I did. It was actually really fun. Are you planning a second book?
We are not necessarily planning a second book, but we do have another plan and that is to serve widows. Part of that is when we talk about travel, it is to provide retreat trips for widows to take together and then have a retreat setting for part of it and otherwise social events and things that we can do together. And so Paula's husband said, so this... And we have a name, braving widowhood. And so Paula's husband says, so [inaudible 00:33:12] I'm the face part.
Beth Demme (33:19):
He's like, where do I fit into this? What's going to happen to me? Hold on.
Do you know something I don't know?
Beth Demme (33:28):
That's awesome that he's supportive. And I would encourage you in that because, Pam, you're a very young widow. And so you have maybe some time and some skills that could really benefit some of those women who are older and would really be able to lean on you on that, so that's awesome.
We also felt God was calling us to this, so I feel like if you're doing what God's calling you to do, you're going to find joy in that always.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (33:59):
And now it's time for questions for reflection. These are questions based on today's show, Beth will read them, and you can answer them to yourself, or you can find a PDF on our website at dospod.us
Beth Demme (34:10):
And stay tuned for a slice of life. Number one, what is your experience with twins in your life? Number two, do you have any preconceived notions about twins that were confirmed or debunked today? Number three, have you ever desired to have a twin like connection with someone in your life? Have you ever experienced it? And number four, would you ever consider writing a book with one of your siblings? How do you envision that situation going?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (34:43):
Thank you ladies for being on, it's been so exciting to like virtually see you guys again. One day we will see each other in person again too, I believe that.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (34:52):
But just briefly give us a quick synopsis, give us that elevator... I know you know about elevator pitches, because in our author classes, give me the elevator pitch for your book, go.
Well, it started with The Most Amazing Harvest, which was the farmers came together to harvest Carl's crops. There were 458 acres of corn that they harvested in 10 hours. And it was a beautiful picture of humanity, selfless service. And so we knew that was a special event and Carl's life also was very inspirational. And Pam, you can finish that.
Yes, I was always inspired. There was a lot of medical trials in his life and that's why I think I felt the call to tell his story because he was an inspiration to me and so many other people because he didn't complain, he was always grateful. He always lived life to the fullest. On the day of the harvest, there was a quote.
A farmer can ask for no better crop than a bountiful harvest of friends. If you go to The Most Amazing Harvest.com, you can see about the harvest and about the story. And also I just, we have a Facebook page. I wrote a poem and then a friend of ours wrote a song and the song tells the story of The Amazing Harvest too, so that's cool.
Beth Demme (36:31):
And our Facebook group, which is also The Most Amazing Harvest.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (36:36):
Awesome. Most Amazing Harvest.com. Most Amazing Harvest on Facebook. Are you on Instagram?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (36:43):
Most Amazing Harvest?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (36:46):
One thing we would like to ask all of our guests is a question, and so I'm curious to ask identical twins this question, so Pam, I'm going to start with you. My question is what book, TV show, or podcast are you excited about right now?
Well, I'm reading a book called Find The Meaning, which is from David Kessler. And it's about finding meaning in your grief. And so it's the next stage of grief after what they say are the stages. Finding in the tragedy, but finding to go forward and have a purpose, so that's my book.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (37:26):
Awesome. Okay, so Paula, same question, what book, TV show or podcasts are you excited about right now?
I just finished Perfectly Yourself by Matthew Kelly, which is very good to help you be more self aware and to look at yourself and how you can be better, so I just really enjoyed that.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (37:53):
Awesome. So two separate things from twins. I love it. It wasn't the same. So do you guys read the same books at all?
Stephanie Kostopoulos (38:01):
Okay. Once one reads it, then the next takes it over.
It's my turn.
Beth Demme (38:07):
Exactly. Awesome. Thank you so much. Just really excited, I hope that people pick up the book, The Most Amazing Harvest: The Man Behind the Story by Pam Bates and Paula Patty.
Stephanie Kostopoulos (38:16):
And we'll have all the links in the description below. This has been the Discovering Our Scars podcast, thanks for joining us.