Monday, February 17, 2014

Back On The Wagon

"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes—and ships—and sealing-wax—
Of cabbages—and kings—

Yes, indeed. The time has come. In fact, you might say, well past.

And you would not be wrong.

My last blog post was in September, a full four months ago. Much has happened in my life since then, though not all of it can explain my absence from performing my bloggly duties.
'Bloggly' isn't a word? Is so, I just used it.
I don't want to overly dwell on the complicated workings of the rusty cogs in my brain-pan, but I thought I might share my thoughts for those who would like to know.

A Hazy Shade of Winter
My son began preparing for an LDS mission in the latter part of the year and received his call in November. He said he could leave immediately and his call--to Yekaterinburg, Russia--gave him 5 weeks before he needed to enter the Missionary Training Center(MTC) in Provo, Utah. Frantically we began final passport duties, etc.

This all took place during Christmas preparations, which is a busy time all it's own. But we felt close to the Lord during this time and it was going well.

Then on Christmas Eve, my dad's health--precarious for the last year--took its final turn. He passed away the day after Christmas, leaving the entire family in mourning.

So, we had my son's mission farewell in church on Sunday, my dad's viewing on Monday, my dad's funeral on Tuesday (completely ignoring New Year's Eve), and my son entering the MTC on Wednesday. With all the mission and funeral activities, by Thursday of that week, I wasn't home for a week or more--literally or figuratively. The only way I could explain it was that I felt stunned. My dad and son were both gone and weren't coming back any time soon.

My anxiety medications kept me from turning into a weepy mess, but I think kept me from mourning as well. Inside, I feel like my heart is sitting on a great bubble. Or maybe it's not a bubble, but a great rubber ball, because there's no chance of it breaking.

Smile Though Your Heart Is Aching
I wanted to get back to writing--because even at its MOST stressful--I enjoy it. The word play, the emotional exploration of characters and their world--all of it.

But I'm having trouble getting past the anxiety (I don't want to get out of bed), the mourning (how will I survive without my dad as a compass?), and the loss (my son made me laugh and cry so much--why is he out past midnight?!).

And oddly enough, I felt like my dad paid me a visit.

I was hiding in bed for the day, and I felt like he was standing at the end of our hallway, in the kitchen, out of the corner of my eye. And he was disappointed in me. Well, maybe disappointed isn't entirely right. Maybe 'sad' that I was where I was.

So, a day or so later, I began final revisions on my Writers of the Future submission and sent it off to my writers group. It felt good to get it going, but I knew I also wanted to get back to my blog, which had been gathering dust for MUCH longer.

Meeting Larry Correia at LTUE 2014
LTUE 2014
Life, The Universe, and Everything Science Fiction and Fantasy Symposium is by far the best bang for a writer's buck. Coming in at $30 for three days (pre-registration or $45 at the door--and students of all ages are FREE), it might be the only writing conference I could afford this year. And since students are free, I was able to take my 3 eager writing daughters too.

It's hard to not be inspired at writing conferences. Even with a realistic view of the writing industry, there is just so much enjoyment of the craft in the air that you can practically suffocate in it.

Anywho, by the time the conference was over, I knew I needed to get my life back on track. So I decided to write a blog post.

I'm not saying I'm born-again, but I have seen the light. Now I just need to take baby steps towards it.

See you next week.

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