Tag Archives: sharing stories


a.k.a Waiting For the Other Shoe

I’m feeling a bit of limbo these days…. things aren’t bad really. Busy, but not bad.

I know things are happening… which sounds ridiculous. Things are happening, always in progress, changing. Life doesn’t stop, hurry, or change its course in any way* just because I’m busy or stressed. Or… because I’m in limbo, waiting for the proverbial Other Shoe to drop.

This has been one heck of a year thus far. For those of you who visited or talked with me in the past 80 days (and the months prior that I spent prepping for my return to blogging and writing in general), this isn’t new news.

Yet I consider myself one of the lucky ones. After the past years of Covid, from the losses of loved ones to the isolation of the lockdowns… I was pretty O.K. Yes, I missed being able to see people I cared about. There were losses in among my family and friends that could only be consoled with a phone call or a note. But there was a spacing, and this sense that everyone else was dealing with the same horrific crap and we all needed to be strong together.

Now the world is trying to pick up and move on. People are trying to recover… And here I am, the Misery Chick. I’m not trying to make anyone feel sorry for me**. Life Happens, and I know so many people who’ve gone through as much or more.

We’ll all go through these things eventually provided we live long healthy lives, and all we can do is choose how we deal with the heartaches and stress.

I’m choosing right now to just deal. Other decisions, other choices, and more progress will follow. Give me a week… really. I know I should be giving an assessment of my ROW80 progress now, but really, I just want to get through this coming Saturday and the Celebration Of Life service Mom wanted to hold for Dad.

Until then, let me share a few photos of him just before Christmas last year.

Dad is on the right at the end
A Red Shirt… Hmm
Asking for donations to the Regional Food Bank at Crossgates Mall in Albany, NY

I don’t know what is coming up next. But I know something is coming. At the very least, I know that no matter how healthy he seems right now, my Itty Bitty Kitty Boy has a growing timebomb in his little furry body.

Then again, don’t we all?

*Though it does seem to speed up and slow down at certain moments in our lives, time doesn’t either. But our minds do seem to create that illusion… One of the non-fiction books I was reading through Round 1 was Time Warped by Claudia Hammond, mainly due to Maria Popova’s review on her site The Marginalian. Because.. I always need something extra to read… 😉

** Despite what my son might say about Tragedy Stacking… Truth is, good things and bad things are random. They don’t come in Threes, and unlike fiction, they don’t happen to some people more than others because of any grand (or not so grand) design.

Just… Another Step Forward

The Beginning Ring of a Dream….. celebrating Coming of Age day

I didn’t intend to miss posting on Sunday. It’s just taken me a bit of time to get inspired to talk about plans and achievements since Thursday when, just as we got the new refrigerator installed, I picked up my phone to see my mom had messaged to say she’d taken Dad to the ER.

The weekend went downhill from there.

So it was a Coming of Age in its own way. Is someone Daddy’s Little Girl still his little girl when she’s in her 50s and he’s gone?

Truth is… my father would have found Kyary’s songs trivial and silly. This from a man who used to do a great imitation of Tiny Tim singing Tiptoe Through the Tulips (and he often added his own verse in his natural base voice that went “Stomping through the nasties; won’t you come along and stomp, through the nasties, with me”*). His favorite songs were from groups like the Mamas and the Papas (he loved Cass Eliot’s voice); Janis Joplin; Peter, Paul & Mary as well as many classical composers and artists like Isao Tomita who envisioned electronic versions of classical works (listening to his version of the Firebird Suite with headphones is sublime).

Anyway, since this is suppposed to be a ROW80 check-in, here’s what I set as my updated goals:

  • Continue to freewrite daily; aim for at least three pages or 20 minutes BICHOP NOPE, unless you count insane pages of texts between family members and brainstorming obituary details
  • Maintain the ROW80 blog and update pages and info as I can Yes, though only in that I set up the next run of scheduled posts; I really need someone to place them on Facebook though, since I can’t seem to get them done in time for our European members
  • Spend an hour daily, five days a week, sorting computer files (photos, notes, etc.) Collecting photos for the memorial has gotten me look through them, but not as carefully as I probably should
  • Spend an hour daily typing in notebooks, five days a week No
  • Reading… focus on reducing the “presently reading” list by finishing the library books (the hold up here is that several are non-fiction for research purposes, and those can be slow going when I’m taking copious notes or cross referencing details) Nope. Even the time i the waiting room was not done waiting
  • Update name blog and test it for “digestibilityI DID finish a post I’d started for the WeWriWa bloghop on my main page; not sure I want to continue doing them there, but for now, I’ll leave it and try to get a pattern started
  • Learn the ins and outs of the Fediverse (Mastodon, Diaspora, etc.) Nope
  • Maintain a weekly sabbath, a day where I do not NEED to do anything at least Is there an emoji for exhausted, maniacal laughter?

Actually…. Looking at the blue, I’m surprised. I feel like I accomplished nothing except alienate my brother and give my mother one more thing to deal with.

North Underbelly of the Thaddeus Kosciusko Bridge

Oh, and catch this photo from under the Twin Bridges Saturday evening….

*Nasties being nasturtiums, which we’d always nibble a few of when visiting my grandparents



Another week, another ROW80 check-in plus WIPpet Wednesday post…

I’m on roll here.  Almost two months worth of posts again.  Yay me!

Seriously, yay me.  It’s hard to get back into doing things after a long hiatus, and even harder when Life has been busy piling on its blessings of extra things to deal with.  And of course, it’s the holiday season with its standard package of events and obligations…  and memories.

I don’t deal well with the holiday season.

My goals aren’t suffering for this burst of motivation.  I’ve managed, on average, around 800 words a day.  Most of it is brain dumps and plotting ideas, but it’s been good for exploring stories and feelings reactions…  New story is coming a bit slower, but I’ve managed to add around 100-300 words almost every day, just not every day.

For my creativity bursts, I’ve been doing some daily drawing practice, trying out techniques and seeing what I could come up with in 10-20 minute bursts of drawing.  As I used to draw from an image and then tweak to my tastes, having to free-style it has been an interesting challenge.    I’m learning more about what sorts limitations I work best within and how to work around them.

Limits seem to be the best creativity boosters I’ve found lately.  Trying to write or draw just “anything” always seems to become nothing.  But if I set a limit, a number of words or a posture…  somehow I can get “something” on the page.

I’ll have to start Instagraming the pictures so I can post them here as well as Facebook.

And yes, the rest of my goals, to type in pages and to get packing/house-clearing done are progressing…  slowly.


This week’s entry for WIPpet Wednesday is 14 sentences (plus one lead-in from last week’s post) of Singer of the Swan Song.  We’re still in the opening chapter., and I’m really hoping for feedback on whether this would “hook” you all as a reader.

Maths: 12/20/18…  add all the digits, then count two fragments as a sentence 😉

She felt herself start to fall and reached out again. “Mama!”

Smelly muck splashed about her as she landed face-first, just missing the paving cobbles. Her outstretched arm hit one, hard.

It hurt so very much, her breath caught in her throat. The hiccups almost came. ‘Tara forced them back. She wouldn’t cry. The boys had taught her that in their games. The more she cried, the more they’d torment her. But when she’d stiffened her lip and choked back the pain, they’d petted her, telling her how strong and brave she was. Just like them. Not like the twins’ snippy sister.

Her parents had sent her away because she wasn’t strong and brave.

But what if… ‘Tara didn’t know if she could be more scared than she was already, but she had cried a lot the day ‘Listii’d been hurt. Was Mama sending her away now too?

Interested in more? Interested in joining in? Being a WIPpeteer is pretty easy. First, you have to write something (that’s the hardest bit) and then you have to post it to your blog on Wednesday, using what we call “WIPpet Maths”… which really means, fudge around with the numbers on the date until you come up with something that fits what you’d like to share.

For more WIPpet fun, head over to the WIPpet linky and visit some our other awesome members. The WIPpet is hosted by Emily Wrayburn.