2016, A Year Like No Other

It’s Christmas Eve. Again. The years churn up faster as I get older, and a year-end always takes me by surprise. I’m turning 63 in January. You’d think I would have figured it out by now, wouldn’t you? When it suits my purposes, I can be a slow learner I suppose.

The political events of the past months have rendered me wordless. That’s right, not just speechless, but wordless. Bear with me here. I’m not a big political talker so this won’t take long. However, it is part of the story of 2016 so it demands a mention. In the words of Elvis, many of us following the news stories felt “all shook up”. Never mind that the word should be shaken, rather than shook. We’ll let that slide for now. It was a tumultuous year, and the election brought a level of discord to our nation that won’t soon be forgotten. For me, I felt horror that so much ugliness was let out of the bag. Not just in the election itself, but from the people of this beautiful country. Family, friends, neighbors, all sniping at each other or unfriending one another because of differences in political opinion. It was hot and vulgar and it still is. It wasn’t even often about the political party. It was all about the leader of the party. People felt such helplessness as they watched it all unfold that many did not even bother to vote. And it isn’t the voters that angered me so much, as it was the apathy of those who just couldn’t even bother. How privileged we are to have a vote, and how irresponsible of us not to. Even if we’re not crazy about either party at the moment, not to vote? Unthinkable to me, and to many who value the right to have a say in how our country is run.

As the year moved forward, I felt dread about our political future, oh hell, about any future at all if power fell into what I felt were the wrong hands. The more I heard, the worse it got. Even when I tried to avoid the news reports to save my own sanity, the turn of events haunted me. It was everywhere! I did something that I hadn’t done in years. I stopped writing. It was like I was immobilized and I’d closed off one of the best parts of myself. I felt numb, but I still hurt. Can you relate? It was like watching a horror movie, only it wasn’t fiction. Nothing was going to be hunky-dory in the end. It was still going to suck. Bigtime. Then there was the mourning when it all came to a close and DT won. Just like the stages of grief we all know so well. I still couldn’t write. And I was angry, and afraid for America, for the world. I still am. I have friends in both camps, and our friendships have survived the past year. I have faith that they will survive the next, no matter what comes to pass.

Finally, after the railing, whining, anger, and imaginings, I realize that one person is not going to be able to reverse this process, drag him out of political office and make my world right again. I don’t have the power to have him replaced no matter how many petitions I sign. He’s not going away any time soon. So, the fact is that I had better get a grip and get on with my life.

I still believe in the goodness of human beings. I don’t believe all people from over there are terrorists. I do believe that the world has evolved in many ways to become better because of individuals who tried to light up their own little corner of the world. I think that comes from kind actions, showing up, speaking up, spreading the Light, being authentic, and being generous with love. I believe that giving is stronger than shoving, and that good will prevail over evil. Many people think I am a Pollyanna and I have been accused of that many times. I am a lover of kindness, generosity, goodness, human dignity, and decency. I believe that when others are hurting and we have the power to help them, we need to step up. I believe we need to speak out against injustice and stand by those who are persecuted. I believe that sharing goes beyond our own family or community and extends out into the world.

And I believe in the goodness of humanity, despite current evidence to the contrary. I believe that the way we change the world is by changing ourselves, and being generous in our own lives and our way of being. I believe that our kindness will affect those around us, and like the flu bug it will spread and multiply. I believe that the best way we can heal our country and the world is by first healing ourselves and our own personal relationships. And that we need to stop with the mentality that says there isn’t enough to go around, that if someone else prospers we will lose out, that if we share our bounty, we’ll get less ourselves. I don’t think we have finite boundaries on plenty. I think that we just have to be part of new ideas that will provide not just for ourselves and our own families, but for everyone in need. That takes a dedicated country, pulling together, caring in our own communities and willing to give pieces of themselves selflessly to others. And you know what? I believe we are up to the task. I think that if we listened carefully and we weighed what we saw, and if we had a vision for a world we’d be proud to live in, that this is the lesson we could take away from 2016, that WE ARE BETTER THAN THIS. And that WE HAVE THE POWER to make change.

Do you still think that I am a Pollyanna? Yeah, I know, but that’s okay. The world needs me as much as it needs you, and together we could make monumental change. I don’t mean in some huge, grand gesture, but by the way we conduct ourselves day to day, year to year. If we are going to live in this world, let’s claim it and be agents of change. And above all, let’s believe in the power of love. I still feel that it is greater than all the weapons on earth. Sometimes it’s too easy to get lost in the mayhem and forget that “we are all just walking each other home”. May the peace of the season be upon you.

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This is my Country Too

Okay, I’m just going to come out and say it. I can’t keep it in anymore and I feel like I should be doing something more, because my adopted country is at stake. I have been on FB since 2008 and I have tried to make my posts in keeping with the light on this planet. I have avoided politics and religion, have tried to always post things that were uplifting, interesting, informative, heart-warming, or funny. That is what I always wanted to do. This post is not meant for anyone to start arguing politics. I’m not into that. Just move on if that is your intention. In fact, I notice that people are even bickering on FB now about ingredients in recipes! Something’s got to give. The thing is that whether we speak out loud about this or we remain silent, the stress of the government changes of late is getting to most of us.

This is not about one political party or the other. This is about the direction this country is headed, and our choice about what to do about it.  I hear a lot of talk about being afraid. I refuse to give in to fear. Fear is what helpless people feel. We only succumb to fear if we allow it. We are not victims unless we allow it.

What I’m feeling is not fear. It is anger. Every day I am faced with new realities. Silencing the EPA and others, blacking out info so it can’t reach the public eye, even if we are told are “temporary measures”, is absolute bullshit. Remember when taxes were a temporary measure? Yeah, like that. Changing immigration laws so that white faces like mine can migrate to the U.S., but faces of other colors can’t? Making immigration a racial contest. Taking money away from programs that help children, the underprivileged, the disabled, the aged? Taking away safeguards so that people with pre-existing conditions may not have access to health care? Yes, let’s have a country full of people who can’t afford life-saving medications or procedures. Oh, and don’t even get me started on women’s issues, protection for our LGBT friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers. Let’s make women ashamed to report sexual assaults by questioning what sexual assault is. And let’s elect the leader of our country by choosing a man who himself admits to sexually assaulting women, and sees nothing wrong with his so-called “locker room talk”.  That makes a great role model for the boys and girls being raised her in the good ol’ USA. By all means let’s have a bunch of babies born to underprivileged women, sexually assaulted women, and give them virtually no help to raise them.

I’m feeling ashamed for our country.  I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to have to face future generations and tell them that I was just posting feel-good things on Facebook and not doing anything to turn this tide before we too were silenced. Some of you may be too young to know what all of this means, why we know that this is a treacherous path, and why we must do something to turn this around. I’ve seen enough damage done in the last 4 days, his first 4 days in office to last me a lifetime. I just can’t even imagine what he can do in the next 3 years and 361 days.  I hesitated to post this, thinking about my own immigration status, and that I might be black-balled by the stroke of a pen for my political views, for my audacity to practice free speech in this “free country”. But I decided that I am going to do it anyway. If I get kicked out for this, then perhaps I shouldn’t be here in the first place. I thought it was my job to be part of government, part of what makes this place great, part of holding the hand next to mine, together making the USA what it really stands for.

I’m not politically astute. I’ll be the first to admit that. But I do know human decency, kindness, and the spirit of working together for the greater good. I don’t understand the spirit of working together to tread upon those beneath us on our way to the top. I don’t understand vilification, ignorance, sexism, racism, greed, and mean-spiritedness. America already is great. Let’s keep it that way.

What can we do to help turn things around? I’m opening this up because I need some concrete things I can do, and if you’re like me, maybe you do too. I don’t want to wait until we have no more national forests for future families to play in, I don’t want to wait until our every word is censored. So I hope someone out there has some constructive ideas they can share. If you are only going to post ugliness, don’t bother. It will be promptly deleted. If you just want to talk about what’s in your heart, or share ideas about how we can make a difference, please talk.

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There was not one second during the reading of this book that I felt like I was anywhere else but right in the moment with Persimmon. I was captured from the first line of the book, and transported to another time. History came alive for me in a way I never could have imagined. Not only was I living in history, but for the first time in my life, I felt what it would be like to be dark-skinned in those transformative moments of America’s past. After I finished the book, or rather, after the book was finished with me, I still find myself going back over the events that transpired in those pages. It is a book that author Nancy Peacock meticulously researched, and that fact shines through in every chapter. It reflects not only the highest and best in mankind, but the lowest and basest. It is a roller coaster ride where you can barely catch your breath before you crest the next drop, not guessing where it will take you. The writing is both graphic and lyrical in turn, and full of images that will linger long after the last page is devoured. No hesitation in rating this with 5 Stars. Available on Amazon.com.

https://www.amazon.com/Life-Times-Persimmon-Wilson/dp/098841643the-life-and-times-of-persimmon-wilson

Posted in Books, Bookworms, Life, Reading, Writing, writing and life | 1 Comment

TEN NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS FOR BOOK WORMS

Reading Companion

 TEN NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS FOR BOOK WORMS DRAGONS

By Ruth Knox

First, since this is a new year and all, let’s clear one thing up. I may be passionate about books, and a good deal of my life might be spent in them, but I am not a worm. It has been my experience that those with a penchant for books are passionate, fierce, funny, and brave. That sounds more like a dragon to me than a worm. So henceforth, we shall be called Book Dragons, worms be damned.

So here are my top ten resolutions for this luscious new year:

  1. Expand Our Horizons. Let’s face it. We all have genres we love, and go-to authors who have earned our undying loyalty. We secretly mourn when a book series ends and we have to find a new love. But this year, I am committing to trying out a new class of books. My daughter is hooked on historical fiction. She buys the fattest volume she can find, and buries herself in it until she has finished the book. She is fascinated by the historical facts she learns, and by living with the characters in another place and time. This year I’m going to give it a shot. How could you expand your reading horizons this year?
  2. Limit Our All-Nighters to weekends and vacation days. If you are anything like me, you often start work in the morning with a book hang-over. You know, you meant to go to sleep early. You got ready, put your jammies on, and slipped between the sheets. You told yourself you would read one, just one chapter. Next thing you know, it’s 3:30 a.m. and you realize you have to get up for work in two and a half hours. This is not only bad for your career, but it’s also not good for your health. I will strictly enforce this all-nighter rule in the upcoming year. Okay, I’ll mostly do it. Okay, honestly, I’ll try to do better. I really will. No promises.
  3. Trust Our Instincts. You know how it goes. You hear about what is supposed to be a great book, or you read the blurb inside the dust jacket, and you think this is a book you must read. With giddy excitement, you put aside time to launch into this literary feast. You get yourself comfortable, threaten everyone within earshot not to disturb your book orgy on pain of death, even make a cup of tea or coffee, and settle in. Ah heaven, how sweet is this! With a smile of anticipation playing on your lips you crack open the book, inhale the perfume of the ink, feel the texture of the book on your fingers…oh wait, maybe it’s an e-book. Well then you have to ignore that first part, but either way, here you are, ready to indulge with a capital I. You begin, open heart and mind, ready to be inundated with a tale that will steal your heart and soul…only it doesn’t happen. By page 4 you are puzzled and perturbed because you don’t yet give a damn about any of the characters. Being a Book Dragon, you forge on….page 10, 15…. What is wrong with this picture? Let’s face it, on page 4 you knew it wasn’t going to happen for you. But you always want to give the author the benefit of the doubt, thinking that if you give her 3 or 4 more pages, she’ll rope you in. You forge on, despite what you already know. She just doesn’t do it for you. It’s not going to happen. For you, this book is a dud. For someone else it may be great. The point is, when your instincts tell you that you and the author are not going to make it together, trust them. Put it down, give it away, do whatever you have to. But don’t spend the next week plowing through it, looking for that illusive moment when you’ll give a damn. Because you won’t. Pack it up. Move on. The sooner you can do this, the less time you will waste on a disappointing book that is never going to deliver the rush you crave.

 

  1. Give the Gift of Books. It doesn’t matter if your budget is big or small, the gift of books is the perfect gift every time. Christmas, Birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Happy Nothing’s Day, you can’t go wrong with books. So many of us are Book Dragons, and yet when it comes to gift-giving we sometimes overlook the obvious. Even if the person you are buying for is not a Dragon like you, she’ll probably enjoy a good book. One roadblock to this idea is thinking that you just don’t know what type of book the person would enjoy. You browse your favorite local or online bookstore, and come up empty. Well, not empty. You find at least a dozen books to add to your wish list, but nothing for them. There are two ways to handle this. If you are shopping at your local bookstore, talk to the staff who can often make brilliant suggestions that you may not have considered on your own. When you find the right book, you’ll know it, by that urge to fist pump, and say silently or aloud, “Yes!” And if that doesn’t happen, a bookstore gift card is like an offering of fine gold. It is virtually impossible to go wrong. So, forget the gift of a tea cup, a sweater, toy or a game. Give the gift of words. The world will thank you.

 

  1. The Value of e-Books. Are you like me? Do you love to feel the texture of the pages and the dust jacket of a new hard-cover book? Do you long to inhale the ink from the pages, and admire it sitting prominently on your bookshelf? Yeah, I get it. But whether we embraced them immediately or were dragged kicking and screaming to the concept of e-books, they are here to stay. Now hold on for a minute. This doesn’t mean you have to give up your hard-cover stash, nor do you have to stop mid-collection of a series you love, and start reading the rest in e-book format. But there is some incredible value in e-books, and who would want to miss out on incredible value, or the chance to sample new authors who might just be talented enough to capture your loyalty? You can often sample a new author’s book for only .99 to $2.99. No $29 investment on an author who has not yet proven himself to you. For half the price of a cup of coffee you can often try out a new author’s e-book. If you don’t like the author, well then you don’t have to save a place on your shelf for him. And you still have enough coin left for a half cup of coffee.

 

  1. Share the Wealth. Do you know someone who can’t get out much anymore, but who loves to read? My mom was that person in my life. She liked books that I would never be tempted to read. She loved Harlequin romances. But she lived in a rural area on a limited budget. She didn’t have access to a used book store or even a library. One of my favorite things to do for her was to hit the second-hand book store and buy up dozens of these books. I would pack them all into a box and ship them out to her at least once a year. If she ran out before the next shipment she’d let me know and I’d go on another buying expedition. When she was done with the little paperbacks, she would share them with family and friends. It was the perfect arrangement. Maybe it’s not your mom; maybe it’s a neighbor or aunt, and maybe she doesn’t live far away, but she still can’t get out much. How much would it add an element of joy to her life to have a stash of books at hand?

 

  1. Spread the Love. Nothing matters as much to a writer’s career than reviews. This is especially true for relatively new indie authors. If you read a book that you enjoyed, go to Amazon and leave a positive review. Their ratings depend on them, and if they wrote a kick-ass good book, they deserve to be acknowledged by your review. It has been my experience if I finish a book but don’t leave a review right away, I’ll never get around to it. If you’re like me, then make it a priority to do it before you forget, or make yourself a note to do it, and then don’t lose the note. My note has to be on my electronic calendar because if it’s on a piece of paper it will get lost on my desk. Many of you know what that means. If and when I ever find it again, I won’t be able to decipher my hen scratches. Just do it now, okay? Okay fine.

 

  1. Support your Local Library. My local library is awesome! There are so many innovative new programs for children and adults. Check them out. Be a part of this valuable community resource. They never have enough funding, so library book sales are a common fund-raising effort by volunteers. These book sales are incredible fun. I’ve been part of volunteering and also part of buying. There are always some surprising finds. It’s more like a treasure hunt than a shopping expedition, and the bargains are unbelievable. Take a friend with you, and by all means, bring the family. There are books, videos, and much more. And everything is so inexpensive you won’t have to say “no” to your kids. It’s important to let them know that by attending the sale, your family is helping to support the library programs they love.

 

  1. Read One More Book. I am a prolific reader. There’s no getting around that. But the truth is, that no matter how much I read, there are so many more books out there that I will never get to. So this year, I am committing to reading one more book per month. That’s right. Another book. Let’s break it down. Average 30 days per month, book length, let’s say 60,000 words. That breaks down to about 2,000 words per day, which is only a few minutes of my time. If I cut out one half-hour show per day, let’s say, one episode of Family Feud, I would have time to make a cup of tea, put my feet up, cuddle up with my little dog, and savor those words. At the end of the month, I would have another book under my belt. Yes, this is doable! Who’s with me?

 

  1. Find a Child with which to share your love of reading. This may be the last of my ten resolutions but it is the most important. When I was pregnant with my twin daughters I read to them in the womb. I’d settle in, get as comfy as I could with a huge tummy full of future readers, and I’d rub my belly softly with one hand, while I read them some great children’s stories. To this day, as adults, they are both avid readers and I have no idea if that had anything to do with it. It was just a happy memory I couldn’t resist sharing with you. But the point is to find a child. Doesn’t have to be a relative, but it needs to be a child who could benefit from a love of reading. In case you’re wondering, that includes every child on earth. There are volunteer positions as foster grandparents where you can go into a school and help children with their reading skills, encourage, and support them. There are the kids next door, the Christmas toy drive where you can pick out books and donate them to kids you will never know. No matter how you do it, make a child’s life richer with the joy of reading. It is one of the best legacies you can leave, and one of the most rewarding feelings.

 

So there you have it, fellow Book Dragons, my top 10. This is going to be a book-alicious year!

Posted in Books, Bookworms, Family, Life, Life After 50, Living Your Life Flat Out, Midlife, Motherhood, Reading, Writing, writing and life | 3 Comments

To Gray Or Not To Gray, That Is The Question

Blonde Ruth

Blonde Ruth

Ruth Brunette

Brunette Ruth

As a toddler I sported a tousled head of blonde hair. It’s the hair I was born with . It was rightfully mine. Then as I reached the age of four, it betrayed me and turned brown, with only streaks of blonde left. This was my lot in life. I grew up sitting behind girls in class who had gorgeous blonde locks, or magnificent strawberry blonde hair. And mine, alas, had turned brown. Say it out loud. Even the word, brown, sounds boring, ho-hum, common. I was none too pleased with the powers that be, for stealing my halo of silky blonde locks. Ugh. I grew up on a Hollywood diet of beauties like Marilyn Monroe, and I wanted to be one of them, not a movie star, just a blonde.

When I turned 20, I decided to take matters into my own hands and bought a spritzer of Sun-In at the local five and dime. I thought I’d just test drive it to see how a little blonde could spruce up my hair, light up my life. It was a daring act back then. The results were a tad disappointing though, giving my hair just a little golden glow if you caught it in the sun at the right time of day. It was unmistakably still brown. Phooey! The next week I went to the drugstore and purchased my first box of Miss Clairol. After reading the instructions I decided to risk blindness in the pursuit of the blonde hair that was rightfully mine.

I was ready to find out if blondes really do have more fun. Honestly, how much more fun could I handle? I had twin infant daughters, babysat my two nephews, ran a household, and used cloth diapers with no diaper service. I had to go to the local laundromat to wash them, and had no car. I was about maxed out in the fun department. I dyed my hair anyway, during nap time. Was my life about to take a turn for the better? When I got the girls up from their nap, they took one look at my blonde mane and began bawling, stopping only to catch their breath before they resumed wailing. Eventually they got used to it, though they eyed me suspiciously for more than a week, as if to say, what other nasty tricks have you got up your sleeve?

Life went on, the dishes piled up, the garbage still had to be taken out, floors needed to be scrubbed. My marriage ended, I went back to work. I didn’t have much to lose, but I kept my blonde hair. For about 40 years I remained a bottle-blonde, always trying to keep ahead of the dark roots. Back then you wouldn’t want to be caught dead with dark roots. Now it appears to be the “in” look, but I still don’t like it.

As I matured, a.k.a. got older, I grew stronger, more authentic, and I toyed with the idea of going back to my “roots”, letting my hair grow out, embracing the brown. No more trying to avoid the dreaded dark roots. I was ready for this. Giddy almost. However, this natural high came to an abrupt end when I realized, to my horror, while I didn’t have the dreaded dark roots anymore, I had many silver, gray, and white roots woven in among the brown. So, having forsaken the blonde of my entire adult life, if I returned to my brown roots, I’d still need to color my hair to purge the gray!

Here’s the deal – I’m not ready to go gray yet. So the line of BS I’d been feeding myself about going back to my natural color, was a total lie. It would appear that my natural color includes a solid dose of gray, and I want nothing to do with it! I know plenty of women who are vibrant, creative, youthful, fun, AND have beautiful, gray hair. I just can’t go there yet. It’s a corner I’m not ready to turn. Maybe in 5 or 10 or 20 years, but not today. Like when I went from blonde to brown, I’ll know when the time is right. Okay, full disclosure, I cried for two days when I gave up the blonde, but in the end I was happy with my decision. In fact, I now love my thick, luxurious, brown hair. It’s neither boring nor ho-hum. It’s me. It feels like me. It feels good, matches my insides. Gray does not. So to the question, “to gray, or not to gray”, my answer is an emphatic, “Not yet”!

Posted in Family, Life, Life After 50, Marriage, Middle Aged Women, Midlife, Motherhood, Senior, Women | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

May you give some. May you get some.

Hope Dec 2013

Happy Valentine’s Day, to the single, divorced, engaged, married, and widowed, to those in a committed relationship, and those who face the world on their own every day. Happy Valentine’s Day to all of us, because though we don’t need one day a year to remind us to celebrate the love, spread the love, and share the love, it’s nice that we do. It’s also nice that it’s not just about romantic love, but about love in general, how we treat one another, our parents, and children, and siblings, our friends. It’s about how we treat strangers, and how we treat ourselves, and our furry family members. Maybe it’s just a carry-over from my hippie days, but I’ve always believed that life is all about the love, and I always will. When I was in the depth of teenage angst, at 14, I wrote, “It doesn’t matter what the question is, the answer is always Love.” I thought it was so original and profound. Later I found out that millions of people had written down the same “original, profound” thought. Though I’m not a simpleton, I’m still simplistic, because I stand by that statement, the answer is always Love.  May you give some every day. It will be returned. If you don’t believe me, get a dog. He/she’ll be happy to teach you how this works.

Posted in Family, Homeless, Life, Life After 50, Marriage, Midlife, Spiritual | 5 Comments

Farewell NaNoWriMo

“Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk   with love and reverence.” – Henry David Thoreau

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With a great sense of purpose I flew headlong into NaNoWriMo this year. I’ve done it other years too, and found that this time, more so than others, it was less arduous to meet the 50,000 word goal in 30 days. That was an interesting observation.

What I also discovered in its wake, is that I may never do it again. If I want to write 50,000+ words in 30 days, I can do it on my own, in any given month. Or I can choose to take more time. Or write differently. In my own style. In my own way. In my own time.

For the first time this year, I had a sense of the experience, though not the content, being soulless. It felt like driving through a beautiful countryside, and not at a slow pace, with the windows down, so I could take in the scent of the pines, the spray from the river, the mountains, the skies, and the wild flowers. It felt more like zooming around the curves in an air-tight, high-speed automobile, with everything being just a blur as I whizzed by. When it was over, I felt empty, cheated. Kind of like having sex with a faceless stranger instead of making love with someone you care deeply for.

This is not a condemnation of NaNo in any way. It is a fun activity, very social, and helps many people do what they ordinarily would not do on their own. But after having participated for several years, I have to say, I’ve discovered it’s just not me. It’s not my style. It removes my intimate connection to my writing, always rushing forward instead of taking a pause to look back and see what I’ve managed to write so far, and how it sits with me. That is the intimacy part I mentioned. That is what was missing. The truth about that is that I could have read over what I had written so far, but I was afraid that if I did, my inner editor would kick in and I would tear everything apart , become discouraged, not reaching my goal. So I dare not look.

However, when the month was over, I took the time to read my 25 days of work, and discovered that even under those circumstances, I wrote some very good material, and I wrote some crap. Not total crap. You can put an S on the front of crap, and it turns into scrap. Sometimes you can make something lovely out of scrap. It just needs more work than the stuff that already looks pretty good. So my month was not wasted.

But here’s the thing. For me, writing is not just about writing useable material. For me, it is as much about the experience of writing, as it is about producing a finished manuscript. Being in the moment of it, holding it, nurturing it, helping it take shape, those are the gifts of writing to me. And I didn’t get as much of that as I wanted. What I missed was stopping in the middle of my writing to go for a long walk down by the river while I shaped an idea before I spilled it onto the page. What I missed was reading poetry in my sunny window before my sessions, listening to ethereal music and getting lost in the ecstasy of it. What I missed was writing with my eyes closed, my fingers moving so fast that I could not even connect with them, going on auto-pilot while an idea played out, directly from somewhere inside of me and out through my fingers onto the keyboard. Then reading it afterwards, surprised at what I found there on the page.

That is how I connect with my work, and that is what I felt I had missed out on. So, no, I don’t think there is another NaNo in my future. I’ve always been the type of person that has to do things her own way. What works for others may just not be the thing that will work for me. I honor and respect that in myself, and to write counter to that, well, it just makes no sense. I believe in going outside my comfort zone to try new things. In fact, I do it often because I think it can often provide experiences that are both rich and rewarding. And sometimes, let’s face it, it’s just a flop. Better to recognize that, and go with what resonates inside of me.

So farewell, NaNo. Thank you for your gifts, for the people I’ve met through you, for how we encouraged one another along the way, for the allure, the excitement, the challenge. The truth is that I will never be able to stop writing. I’ll just be doing it solo in the future. It was a wild ride, but I prefer to travel the dusty paths on foot, stopping to smell the wild flowers along the way.

Posted in Books, Life After 50, Living Your Life Flat Out, Midlife, Spiritual but not Religious, Writing, writing and life | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments