Yes, it’s been awhile. I could blame life, but really I think it was laziness that got in the way of me posting.

Yes, life has been trying at times. Definitely some days that I couldn’t wait to get over with–specifically my mother’s birthday (May 9) & Mother’s Day (May 10). Yep, back-to-back. After I passed the 6-month mark in March, I think I became obsessed with how I would or wouldn’t get through that weekend in May. On the upside, I got through it with a trip out of town. I knew I couldn’t be home that weekend. I knew it would be too hard. Instead, I went to DC to spend it with my brother & a lot of really good friends, who for the most part did a great job of distracting me & keeping me busy. Admittedly, attending the wedding of one friend on my mother’s birthday was not ideal. It was a little hard to stand in the church & know that when/if I ever finally decide to get married, my mother won’t be there. That wasn’t a reminder I needed on her birthday. I had thought about skipping the wedding, but I knew I couldn’t. And in the end, as hard as it was to be there, I’m glad I was there. My brother & I dealt with Mother’s Day by essentially ignoring it. Sometimes, that really is the best way to deal with things.

I’m relieved to have made it through that weekend. These last 8 months of events/holidays to get through & get past  have been just that, things & days to get through & get past. Unfortunately, what I realized the day after I returned home was that getting through or past any of these events/holidays really doesn’t mean anything. Yes, I’ve gotten though the one, but there are a lifetime more to come. This just keeps going. Yes, I will admit that today was better than yesterday; but the reality is, however many days, months, or years pass between the day my mother died & where I am, the fact remains, she’s still not here.

God, depressing. I so didn’t mean for this post to be such a downer.

Anyways, all else is good. Leo (my dog) has one more chemo treatment in a week & then he is done with this protocol. He has made it through chemo with flying colors. I never would have expected it to go so well; but I am thrilled that it has. We will do another round of tests–ultrasounds, x-rays, biopsys–once chemo is done to check & see if the cancer has spread & to restage it. But, I’m really expecting good things. He’s had some lumps during chemo that have had to be aspirated to check for cancer cells, but they’ve all come back negative–just fatty cells. So, hopefully, we can put chemo & this mast cell tumor cancer behind us & just enjoy the years to come. Oh, and Teddy has completely recovered from his surgery in January for bladder stones. He has been doing great. Really, when it comes to these two, I am so grateful that they have pulled through the way they have. I’m am so grateful to be here, all these months later with Leo still being his usual hyper-active, whiny self, & Teddy still his grumpy, needy, lazy self. If there is one thing I’ve learned in these months since my mother died, it’s that pets can truly help you get through the grieving process. So, I’m glad that she at least left me them to get me though this.

And lastly, my writing. This quarter, I’m talking a class called Writer as Witness to Life. I think I posted about this class last month. Anyways, I’m about halfway through. I’m starting to think about my final project, which will be a short story. I submitted a sketch last week that I think is going to become the short story I want to complete. I was a bit surprised at how easily the bones of the story were to get out. And I was also surprised by the positive feedback I got back on it. I hate to admit this, but I wrote it at the last minute. Throughout this class, I’ve been really bad about giving myself plenty of time to work on the assignments. This one was definitely the worst. But still, maybe there was something about just having to get SOMETHING down on paper in the hours that I had free. Because, in that time, something just clicked. Hopefully, whatever that something was continues so I can flesh out the story & turn it into something more.

And the novel. Still a work in progress. Baby steps. I’ve been struggling a bit with some rewrites & I’ve been rethinking my strategy for how I work on the two threads within it. I do have a bit of a deadline looming. I’ve signed up for the next in the sequence of the novel writing classes I was taking. (I work better with a deadline.) Last quarter I took Novel II. I was planning to take Novel III this quarter, but was waitlisted. Thus, the Writer as Witness to Life class. So, I just enrolled in the summer session of Novel III & will need to have 50+ pages for my first submission. My actual goal is to have about 75-pages by the beginning of class (June 24)’; and I want those pages to be in good shape. So, much writing & revising to do in the next month. I’m looking forward to it.

So, that’s the update. That’s where I’ve been & where I am. I promise, I’m back & am looking forward to sharing my writing process & continuing search to figure out this thing called life (as if I didn’t already have enough things to do!).