I don’t know where to begin or what to say, or how to express our gratitude for your loyalty, generosity and daily emails, because a mere thank you doesn’t seem enough. Andrew and I are overwhelmed and ever so grateful to you for keeping in touch with us. I want you to know that every email that you send us is read and appreciated. Thank you from the depths of our hearts. To my dear friend Michael Rakuson – former director of Tower Books – thank you for encouraging me to produce Happiness in Hard Times. In your quiet, gentle manner, you persuaded me to create a book appropriate for the current times. Bless you, Michael. To all of you who responded with your stories when I asked for help, I thank you with all my heart. You replied so graciously and promptly. You sent us thousands of emails. Each of your stories continues to inspire Andrew and me. I admire your strength and courage. I congratulate you on deciding to move forward, seeking happiness in spite of your challenges. This is the book you all helped to write, for everyday people going through everyday challenges. To Annie Backhaus, Adrian Elmer, Alfred Engel, Mark Kenway, Geoff McClure, Rod Mudgway, Dianne Mulcahy, Moya Mulvay, Cherry Parker, Jenny Truran – to Alison, Craig, Greg, Hong, Joe, Carmen, Frank and Maria, thank you for sharing your experiences. You bared your souls so courageously. You opened your hearts each time we spoke. You held nothing back. You shared your stories in the hope that your stories would inspire one other person to feel better. To all of you, I salute you!! And to you the reader…this is the book for everyday people going through everyday challenges. This book is for you. This is a book for your friends, your family, your colleagues, your neighbours. This is a book for people you meet on your travels and for people you know who are going through troubled times. Happiness in Hard Times is also a book for those of us who haven’t been through hard times. It puts your life into perspective. It will get you back on track. It will make you realise that a better and brighter future is waiting – and remind you how to get there. Happiness in Hard Times will inspire so, so many readers.Your journey to peace and happiness has already begun. I wish you all life’s very best Julie M Matthews