I know I haven’t been around last month and this month’s post is late as well. I apologize but life has decided to give me a few bumps...
Life has changed drastically for me and I am now just coming to grips to what’s transpired. Now, first, I need to explain that this isn’t a call for sympathy or anything like that but rather how to deal with those life bumps we all get. Second, things happen totally outside our control, a lot, and as writers we need to know how we’re going to overcome these challenges.
In the beginning of January, my husband of 31 years had a routine colonoscopy. He’d been having some gastric issues since he’d been diagnosed with giardia over two years ago but we just put it down to errant gut flora. Low and behold, we got a major wake up call when the doctor told us flat out he had colon cancer.
After a very stunned few days, I knew we had to get a handle on this. We saw doctors, we went to tests and did various other things to insure he received the best care possible. The worst news we received was that it was Stage IV, while the best news was it’s 100% curable with time, chemo and surgery.
I breathed a sigh of relief and immediately went back to writing and formatting a book for the print version of an anthology I was in that was set to release on February 28. Some friends of ours couldn’t believe that I wasn’t more worried and could still think about doing ‘my job’ because I’m a full time writer. Why wasn’t I catering to my dear husband’s every need? My thought was…how do you know I’m not?
For me, life is one of the things that happen no matter what your job is. It’s how you approach each and every life bump that shapes you and your career. Having been in nursing years ago and having a father-in-law who is a retired surgeon plus one of the best medical teams available, I knew my husband would be getting the best care possible. Now, I could do everything on someone else’s time table and not write but I’d be a miserable person. At that point, I would probably be useless to the one who needed me most…my husband…and that wouldn’t do.
Writing is part of the fabric of my being. I can’t survive without it. I sometimes live, breath and eat my stories because I’m so in tune with what I do. My husband knows this and because of my intimate relationship to my work, we discussed my writing and the things I had planned for this year. So far, I have three book signings and one conference lined up. Knowing just how important these things are to me, we decided that as long as they don’t interfere with his treatment, they are a go. Matter of fact, by the time you actually read this, I’ve already done the conference since it was the weekend of the 18th. We basically made it a family trip for visiting the clan in Nevada.
Sure, there are going to be some tough times with surgery and side effects to chemo but those are things necessary to get him well. So far, he’s had two chemo treatments and I’ve gone with a writing tablet to do some work. One week, I did some class work for a Southwest Studies class and the next week I worked on blurbs, loglines and what I’d be doing for my marketing plan with the anthology I’m in. It was definitely time needed at the hospital but unwasted on both of our parts. The DH sat there and answered work email. I took a picture of him because both of us are happiest when we’re doing work or learning something new.
While we wanted to zip, life wanted us to zag. We allowed ourselves time to get used to the new dichotomy then moved on with what we needed to do to make life happy as we moved from point a to point b. It was a little different than planned and knocked us out of align for about six weeks but now we’re back better than before.
And I’m writing with a little different view on life. Please join me next month as I negotiate through life and writing!
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