A Blogger’s Excuse and Inching towards Publication

To care deeply and offer care. To breathe into the moment.  To pause, go slowly, give thanks, say, “I love you.” I’ve been learning this again … and again in these past weeks since my mother went into the hospital with an infection called cellulitis that was quickly made worse by pneumonia. On September 9, I flew quickly to New York to be with her. She’s been learning to breathe more deeply and consciously, learning to do that which has been done habitually and shallowly for 95 years. We are learning patience and trust in the body’s inherent ability … and desire … to heal, to live.

Each evening, I step out of the rehab facility into the day’s last light and breathe real air for the first time in hours. There’s a world out here. I breathe, drinking … gulping fresh cool air, feeling as though I haven’t tasted it in a lifetime. Grateful for natural light, for clouds, for rain on my face. Grateful for grass, flowers, and trees. For the fleeting contact – a nod, a meeting of eyes, a few words of New York-accented humor — for sympathy shared with the people carrying flowers or ‘real’ food, heading in to visit, to comfort, to cheer. We are a common brother/sisterhood of hospital-visitors.

But this is only my excuse for the past two weeks … even if these two weeks feel like two lifetimes and Fort Collins — a universe away.  In the past months, I couldn’t find my way to writing a single blog post. The well was dry even before I upended my quiet life to come and camp out in my mother’s apartment in an assisted living residence, to shape my days around visits to the hospital. (There are books of blogs to be written about places like my mother’s residence! Last night, returning around 7:30 and stopping to update two old friends of my mom’s, who wanted to know, “How’s Winnie?” — we were interrupted by a tiny little woman bent over her walker, calling, “I need help. Matinee musical.” Every attempt to clarify, every question, was met by her moving closer and asking, “What?” My heart ached as I wondered what this lost human being’s days and nights can be. My heart warmed with gratitude for the couple and the staff who came running, for the kindness and concern offered so unreservedly.)

My excuse to myself for not blogging in the past months (I suppose, in the etiquette of bloggers, I should have written a blog to tell you why I wasn’t blogging?) has been that I’ve been focused on the last stages of getting the memoir ready for publication. It’s an excuse but one that those of you who are so inclined to be kind and forgiving of me will probably allow. Well, the good news is that Life with an Impossible Person is inching its way towards you. Molly, my intrepid editor and friend, and I are currently proofreading the second and improved proof-copy of the book. We are hoping for a mid-October publication on Amazon. October 16th is Winnie’s 95th birthday. My hope is to celebrate it with her … with the book.

So, thank you for your patience. Thank you for your support. Thank you for being in my life. I will write again with updates and let you know when the book … is finally and really … a book!

Sending this with love, as ever.

10 thoughts on “A Blogger’s Excuse and Inching towards Publication

  1. Joan,

    Where does time go? Every day is busy and yet I don’t know that I have accomplished anything at all.

    Perhaps I am just inefficient whereas I was always efficient in younger years. My good intentions don’t

    carry me very far. I have meant to get in touch dozens of times but something else pops up which needs

    attention. Those are my excuses/reasons for being out of touch, but not out of mind.

    I am so sorry that your mother’s health has gotten worse and that you are once again faced with the

    possibility of losing a loved one. Your wiring is so beautiful and I hope you will be able to return to


    I always enjoy our few times together and hope that we will be able to meet and chat when you are back

    in Fort Collins. Today I received a jury summons which complicates my life while I am trying to simplify

    it. Aging is tiring.




    1. Ernestine. Thank you for responding to my post. I have come to feel that friends are the people whose “excuses” we accept unconditionally. I’m sure you and I will make time to reconnect when the time is right. Take careful care of yourself.


  2. Dear Joan
    Love and a huge hug from us here in Australia.
    Wishing your dear mum a good recovery and for yourself every success in publishing. You have a lovely talent for writing.


    1. Oh, my goodness, Glenn. Thanks so much for your kind words and wishes. You make me look more exotic — not everyone gets responses to their blog posts from the other side of the world! Love to you and the girls.


  3. Thanks so much, Becky. She went home yesterday! Yay! I fly home this evening with great longing for my home and my life … and with care and concern about leaving her. This business of caring for aging parents is timeless … and brand new for each of us as we live through it. Much love.


  4. Hi Joan,

    So sorry to hear about your Mom. I’m glad to hear she gets to go home today. As do you! Congratulations on publishing! So very exciting! Sending all my love to you!!!! xoxo


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