Mother’s Day 2017

It’s Mother’s Day, again.  All I can think about is how much I miss my mom.  I mean, I always miss her, but today, I miss her so much it physically hurts.  My mom passed away on September 2, 2014.  I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that she’s been gone almost three years.  I can recall the day as if it happened just yesterday.

The other thing about Mother’s Day?  Thanks to circumstances beyond my control, I was never able to have children.  I never got to experience the feeling of the baby growing, moving, kicking.  Then again, I never had to experience the pain of birth.  I never got to have that first contact, skin-to-skin, with the child I carried for nine months.  I didn’t get all the “firsts”.

I helped my niece bring her daughter into the world and helped her for the first year of her life but I wasn’t the mom.  Which was an advantage when the baby made a boom-boom.  “Here.  She stinks.”

The one saving grace, I have the privilege of helping my husband raise his three daughters:  Courtney, and twins: Kaitlynn and Bethany.  Now, I realize I am not their biological mother; nor did I ever tell them that I was trying to replace their mom.  She’s still in the picture.  I’m the “bonus” mom.

Courtney will be 23 in just a few weeks.  She graduated high school and moved to Pennsylvania to go to school.  Katie and Bethany will be 17 in October and will graduate from high school this time next year.  I have enjoyed almost every minute of it.  LOL.

Yes, there have been challenges and hiccups along the way.  It’s a learning process.  I have made mistakes.  I admit it.  No human is perfect.  Are there times when I wish that they were biologically mine?  You bet.  I wouldn’t have to watch them leave every other week.  I wouldn’t be excluded from their lives two weeks out of the month.  But, to be honest, being a full-time parent can be exhausting.  As sad as I am to see them leave, I also like having “me” time during our off-weeks.  It helps me re-charge my batteries.  And I think it helps me be a better bonus mom.  I don’t know how full-time parents manage it!!!  Seriously.  I’m in awe!  More power to all of you!

I also acknowledge, I am a fur baby mama.  I have four (yes, four) dogs.  All little, I assure you.  I love them with all my heart.  They always greet me when I come home.  They are happy to see me.  They cuddle me all night and keep me warm.  This year, we had to say good-bye to one of my fur babies, Niki.  She was poisoned, either by someone, or by eating something that was poisoned.  We don’t know for sure.  It hurt to say good-bye and I miss her too.

So to all you moms: bio, step or fur, I pray that you have had a wonderful, relaxing day.  God bless.  (All opinions are my own.)

 

Starting from the Bottom

I have given myself a deadline of seven years in which I am to garner a book contract and a following of loyal fans.  Lofty?  Perhaps.  I teeter back and forth categorizing myself between author or writer.  I know what other people define those terms as but for me, author indicates someone who has written and published whereas a writer just writes and hasn’t sold anything yet.  I have written and published non-fiction and poetry but not under this pseudonym so I don’t consider myself an “author” and I haven’t received any money for my works … yet.

So far, I’m relying heavily on social media to get my name out into the literary world.  I currently have 158 followers on Twitter (yay me).  I have started a Facebook page and this blog.  This has left me very little time to devote to writing.  But that’s okay.  I need to recharge my creative batteries right now anyway.  I joined Romance Writers of America in the hopes of networking with like-minded writers and authors.  It’s a lot of work promoting oneself.

I’ve been considering self-publishing and I have talked with an author who has done that.  She doesn’t have a full time job outside of writing, publishing and promotion.  I do.  There’s no way I can devote that much time to do all that and work a full time job.  Not possible.  Everything I do has to fit within my “down time”.  And right now, I haven’t been particularly motivated.  My emotions are across the board.

You see, tomorrow is the 2-year anniversary of my mother’s passing.  There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t miss her terribly.  It’s still difficult to believe that she’s gone.  So much has happened in my life since she died.  I find myself wanting to call her and tell her about my day.  Some days I just want to lay my head in her lap and feel her stroke my hair.  She always had a way of calming me down.  I miss her.

As hard as it is on me, I can only imagine how difficult tomorrow will be for my dad.  They were married for 60 years.  They met when they were just kids.  Not a fairytale romance by any stretch of the imagination and they didn’t have a rocky-free marriage (no one does).  But they had a love like no other.  Something I hope to aspire to in my own marriage.

I feel guilty because I was at work the day my mother died instead of being at the hospital with her.  She had been in and out a lot and we knew the time was nearing.  One of my co-workers even scolded me for being there instead of being with her.  I come by guilt naturally so it doesn’t take much to pile it on.  I reached the hospital after work and six minutes later, she was gone.  She had slipped into a coma a few days before and never came to.  I didn’t get to say goodbye.  I didn’t get to tell her that I loved her.  Even now, the emotions are overwhelming.

Towards the end, she was in so much pain.  The dialysis had taken its toll on her.  She was one gigantic bruise.  She suffered so much and lashed out at everyone.  It was emotionally draining on my dad.  It was physically exhausting.  He was her sole caretaker.  He did everything for her:  cooked, cleaned, laundry, beds, showering, dressing … everything to make her as comfortable as she could be.

I am grateful that she is no longer in pain and I know she’s in a better place.  I also know that I will see her again.  But that doesn’t comfort my aching heart from missing her like crazy.  I love you mom.

Sunday Night Blues

It’s Sunday night and I’m sitting at my laptop dreading going back to work tomorrow.  I like my day job well enough but it’s not what I’d rather be doing.  I started my career because I was forced to get out of bed at 20 (even though I’d only been out of college a few months and only unemployed for 2 weeks) by my mom.  She insisted I get up and go drop the application that took me an entire weekend to fill out.  Twenty-nine years later I’m still working for the same entity.  Different job; higher pay but no real job satisfaction.

I wanted to go to law school and become a lawyer.  Yes, I like to argue but that’s not the point.  I had this great need to right the wrongs of this world and as a young person, I actually believed that one person could make a difference.  There’s a part of me that would like to still believe that, but I don’t.

The real passion I have for my life’s work is writing.  I started reading when I was two years old.  Granted, I wasn’t reading War and Peace but I certainly could read the Reader’s Digest.  My mom was a firm believer in reading to a child and for that, I’m eternally grateful to Mom.  Yes, I’m grateful that she also forced me to get my butt out of bed and go to work too but for different reasons.  I will be able to retire young (56 if I have my way) and be able to enjoy the rest of my non-working career doing what I love best (God willing).  That is travel and write (AND most importantly) sell books.

So, I am finally putting myself out there and taking a chance.  I have one completed novel and have put it in the hands of a publishing house.  Ninety days later, I got my first rejection.  The first of many to come.  I didn’t expect to get picked up by the first publisher and yes I was disappointed.  I think what I was most disappointed about was the fact that I didn’t get any input as to why my book didn’t fit in to what they were wanting to publish.  I wasn’t expecting a critique, but it would have been nice if the editor could have said, “perhaps you should send your manuscript to XYZ editor/publisher.  They’re always looking for new authors.”

Too much to hope for?  Yes, I suppose.  I know they have a lot on their plates besides my silly little manuscript, but still, I was disappointed, nonetheless..

Well, that’s my rant for the night.  Check back soon.

That’s just one strong-willed woman’s opinion.

Love y’all and good night.

Just a few Random thoughts

I’m currently writing a sequel.  The lead character is a late-blooming journalist, working in a blog factory as a receptionist.  She had every intention when she graduated with her degree to become a serious journalist.  Is there really such a thing anymore?  Has journalism gone by the wayside like drive in movie theaters?

When I think journalist, I think of people like Edward R. Murrow or David Brinkley.  Men who we believed.  Men (who appeared) to have integrity.  Then you have people like Brian Williams who get caught in lies and you begin to wonder, are any of the mainstream media trustworthy?

Case in point, the presidential election.  It’s all anyone’s read or heard anything (that is if you’re ever on the internet, watch television or listen to the radio).  I get it.  It’s a big year.  It’s an election year.  But I wonder, have we heard the truth come out of anyone’s mouth this entire campaign?

I try not to follow politics not because I’m ignorant or do not care about my country..  On the contrary, I LOVE my country.  I have served my country faithfully for the past 29 years.  I will continue to do so until the day I retire.  I love my country so much that I fear we are going down the same path as Rome before it fell to its knees. History does repeat itself.

I don’t have a solution to our country’s woes.  I don’t want the responsibility of 318.9 million people in the palm of my hands.  That’s a job reserved for Hands more capable than myself.

If I had one piece of advice to my countryman, turn to God, repent of your sins.  This country needs revival!  Soon.

That’s just one strong-willed woman’s opinion.

Love y’all and good night.

 

 

 

Trying this out

Well, this is my first blog post so bear with me.  I am an aspiring author.  I have submitted my first two manuscripts (only to have them both rejected).  I am, however, not discouraged.  It is a tough business breaking into the romance writing game and this I am aware.  So, I will persevere and submit again (and again and again and again).  If you’d like to read a sample of my book, let me know.