The Parallax
The Parallax
See Yourself with New Understanding
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We’ve all been there—times when tumultuous events collide with our lives, sending us down an uncertain path of anger, fear, confusion, and despair. What exactly is the secret to effectively managing these difficult situations when they arise? In The Parallax, Donald Rickert, PhD, relies on his extensive teaching and research experience as he shares a compelling story of restitution and forgiveness with the goal of teaching others, through his characters’ examples, how to effectively manage change and improve personal effectiveness. As Atlanta police captain Francis Ryan Beck and his wife, Sarah, celebrate their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary in a cabin in the Colorado Rockies, catastrophic world events interrupt their plans and force a reexamination of their relationship. As Frank and Sarah learn to see things differently, they not only begin changing their self-limited paradigms, but also begin affecting those around them in profound ways. The Parallax provides hope and helps others discover their own personal stories, ultimately enabling the kind of positive change that encourages a new way of looking at life and those we love.


Through the Years…
you toss and turn at night. It’s no longer dreams that keep you awake; it’s memories. As you go about your day, these memories consume you; regret, guilt, pain and grief drift over you like disconnected shadows. But they’re yesterdays’ realities and their manifestations are ghosts. They no longer exist; however, they persist, attempting to take form. You tell yourself that they can’t hurt you, but you fear they already have, finding ways to lurk in the present until you exorcise them, releasing their power over you, giving you peace.
You question how you got to this place, hoping that a trickster might be blamed and suspect that you’ve been led unwitting to this point. But you fear that’s not the case, knowing that oblivion of time, cloaked by obsession and naiveté, has guided your journey and now malevolent spirits threaten you, nurtured by remorse left like crumbs along a darkened path.
You remember the exhilaration that you felt as you began your journey, looking toward the horizon, yearning fulfillment, but your path took unexpected twists and turns, revealing apparitions that threaten your hope.
You know you are flawed. And, although you have always known this fact, you hoped somehow you’d escape the consequences of your imperfection. Without malice you made mistakes that you can’t correct, some by neglect, some with forethought. Being sorry is insufficient. So, you try to forget.
You have few choices. You’re mortal, trapped in a physical body, and you, along with those that you love, get hurt. Emotions can be unforgiving demons, impossible to ignore. Your survival demands that you free yourself from your fears and save your soul.
You’re extolled to confront your ghosts and are told that you’ll find answers through writing. Words have power. You’re told that if you gather your courage and transfer your fears onto the page, you can escape their grip. You’re promised peace. And as you listen, the words you hear reverberate in your mind, melding with your thoughts as if your own. …the cost of inertia is too great to ignore. And like a nesting Matuska doll, the story unfolds.

Donald Rickert is a professor at St. Louis College of Pharmacy and an adjunct professor at Washington University School of Medicine’s Health Behavior Research Division. His teaching and research focuses on managing change and improving personal effectiveness. He resides in St. Louis, Missouri; this is his first book.

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