It’s been two months since my last post, and I have decided, if I’m going to maintain this blog/site, I have to do much better.
My last post, “An Unplanned Post…” was the result of possible good news about a dear friend who was very ill. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out that way…she passed away the following week, and I went into deep mourning. Never again will I find her sometimes funny and always thoughtful emails in my inbox. Never again will we enjoy laughter and conversation on the phone. She’s gone. Period. I know others have felt her loss, but that doesn’t, in any way, diminish my loss. My parents always taught me to live my life with gratitude, but it was difficult to be “thankful” when mourning the loss of someone I loved.
I have learned many lessons this year, especially as I look back on the adventure of publishing my first book. They ranged from “Oh yeah! So that’s how you do it!” to “I truly cannot believe this…” As far as publishing the book is concerned, I know the second volume of the series will be easier because of what I’ve learned. If I don’t use those lessons to do better in the future, then shame on me.
I imagined taking a well-deserved and much-needed break at the end of March. That never happened. You know, the old “Best laid plans….” thing.
During February and early March, I knew I was experiencing some health issues, but I was so focused on the release of my book, I ignored them. Shame on me. Shortly after publication, I went to my doctor for a physical, and everything was diagnosed. Thankfully, (there’s that “gratitude” thing…) some turned out not to be as serious as I imagined, and the issues that were indeed, serious, are being successfully treated.
During that time, as I spent every week at a different doctor’s office having tests, or at imaging centers for scans and xrays, there was also an extremely serious issue going on with my mother’s health. Between my own health issues, taking care of my family, work, and as always, trying to “be there” for friends who were experiencing their own difficult times, I was unconsciously depleting my energy, both physical and mental.
And then one day, the Wicked Dark Depression came knocking at my door.
However, I am thankful (there’s that “gratitude” thing…again) that I had responsibilities, both personal and professional, that made me keep going, when all I really wanted to do each and every morning was crawl back into bed, pull the covers over my head, and shut out the world. Instead, I defiantly held my head up, taunting that dark shadow. “You won’t get me this time!” Many things gave me the strength I didn’t realize I possessed, including a small group of friends whose supportive, cheerful words made me smile at least once a day.
Even with my own health issues, I’m thankful they’re treatable. Unfortunately my friend was not so lucky. I am very aware, that no matter how bad my “problems” seem to be, I never have to look too far to see someone whose issues are much more serious than my own.
I am also aware that my success as a writer, AND as a person, depends on ME. One of the more painful lessons I’ve learned is that I can’t always depend on others to do as they say they will. Conversely, one of the most wonderful lessons I’ve learned is that help and support sometimes comes from the most unexpected sources. And sometimes, there will be that one person who appears at that precise moment I need help and encouragement the most.
We live, we learn.
I am grateful to have my life, to have friends and family who care about me, and to have the ability to realize that sometimes, I really don’t “know it all.”
I’ll take those lessons and use them all to be a better version of ME.
Thank you for reading, for sharing, and most of all, for your support and encouragement.
And now, I shall return to what I love the most… writing.