I haven’t given up on this thing yet, though there have been enough things happening that I’ve seriously considered it. “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans,” John Lennon once sang, and it’s very true.
Home life has changed a lot. I know we talk about discipline in our writing and the need to show up at the page and put our butts in the chair, but we also need the wisdom to know that sometimes that just ain’t going to happen. This year has been one of those years.
My mother-in-law was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s two years ago, though I suspect she’d been suffering from the disease for some time before. A year ago, a situation arose where she was moved into her home and my husband had to take more responsibility for her medical care. As you might imagine, dealing with that and the attendant family dynamics caused a fair amount of stress. Then, shortly after the first of the year, she began to take a distinct downturn as the disease took its toll. By Mother’s Day, we seriously doubted she recognized any of us. In June, she began having difficulty swallowing. In July, she nearly choked because of that difficulty.
A month later, she was diagnosed with pneumonia, which is one of the leading causes of death in Alzheimer’s sufferers. Her husband of over fifty years made the difficult decision not to ask for heroic measures, and she was gone several days later. Her memorial was held a week and a half ago, the church filled with her friends and family.
So now we try to get back to the business of living, picking up pieces that were put on hold when things began to get bad, even if we didn’t realize they were on hold at the time. For the first time in months, the writing is actually coming easily for me, aided in no small part by my iPad (whose praises I shall sing in another post), and while many of the goals I made at the beginning of the year just aren’t going to happen, I can feel progress happening again. So, as the leaves begin to turn and summer slips into autumn, we begin again.