I turned 54 this past week. Until summer sessions starts my darlin' daughter is in the tornado country of the northernmost U.S. with her love-sigh-almost-engaged guy. So she arranged birthday and mother's day celebrations together the week before she left. That was nice but I found myself puppy-sitting on my birthday. Sigh.
I'm still babysitting the grandpuppy who is still in heat, the third week, when she is most fertile and receptive even though the "signs" are less obvious than last week. I've always been a "rescue one from the pound" type person so I've never had an unneutered or unspade dog myself. My hubby and daughter go for large purebred mastiffs. The pup has good bloodlines, looks gorgeous, and was an expensive dog purchased by someone two weeks before they gave her to my daughter when they got a job offer in another country. So that is taking up some time.
My beautiful, big city living step daughter gave birth to our two beautiful grand daughters at the end of November. That's taken up a bit of time too.
I'm still job hunting as well. I was let go from a position I'd been in for almost three years... two weeks before Christmas. No warning. No severance. Welcome to a "Right to Work" state. I was not happy about that, at all because I enjoyed the position, but I was absolutely dismayed when I was denied unemployment compensation because my former boss had lied and said the things she knew she would have to say to deny me unemployment and keep her payments into the state unemployment comp pool at the lowest possible rate because she has never had to pay out any. I appealed the decision and won the case.
But the whole firing thing, quite frankly, sucked. It drained energy from me because it hurt so much. I had considered the owner a friend and mentor. But when she tried to deny me what I was legally entitled to, even in a RTW state, it challenged my belief in the goodness of people. And I had worked quite diligently to cultivate a blind eye to non-injurious and ill spirited intentions of people as I really do want to see the best in people.
Maybe it all wouldn't have worn on me quite so heavily if the court hearings hadn't been just after the Tucson shootings and if I didn't live in Tucson and couldn't see the hospital where the survivors were taken from my home. I had worked with one of the victims, gone to Sedona concerts with another, and had had several short peace and war exchanges with Gabby, my Representative. All these folks, thank heavens, survived. My husband was working with Gabe Zimmerman on a community project, his card was in my husband's jacket pocket. All this ripped my heart out. At the same time I was so heartened by the Tucson community. I participated in the evening vigil at the hospital on January 8th. There were energies in the air in a way I had never experienced. People were sending healing energies, prayers of a sort, to the survivors in the hospital. The air was filled with a determined love. A friend, my husband, and I just showed up but I knew at least one of the first candle lighters, one of the pastors was and is a friend. It was all so very personal. Everyone in Tucson seemed to feel that. I waited in line all day with another dear friend to hear the President speak. Rainbows and puddles will never seem quite as generic as they did before he spoke.
I felt I had to do something large and good with my life because I was alive and had the time and skills to do almost anything I set my mind on to accomplish. I decided to start a green classified local newspaper of sorts that would bring local small businesses and local shoppers together. I planned, and schemed, and put together a presentation and business plan to present to a mentor at a blogging conference I attended in March. It was all going very well, although I kept getting more and more tired. Psychic drain I thought. I began to have second thoughts about the business venture.
Then bin Laden was killed and I realized that my life since that horrible day when the towers fell and the Pentagon burned had been shaped by the terrorism of that day. I realized the things I was doing when I heard on the TV about the attack: working on a Late-Boomer site, writing fun stuff that I just felt like writing for a humor and old Hollywood site run by a feminist, and researching for a book or three were the things I really felt passionately about before politics took over my life when we began fighting a war that nothing to do with fighting the people who attacked us. I didn't lose my way, no, not at all. But I was distracted by things that needed to be done. As I've spoken of before in this blog, I'm looking forward to being done with "things that have to be done." I started writing my Late Boomers site again and migrated many of the old site posts after I realized I wanted to do something that was good for society and gave me some joy. I'm such a nerd. Demography and cultural research are so much fun, and I have a post undergrad degree that taught me tons about both of them, so I'm even qualified to talk about them.
I had started this site, Done Nesting, to put up my personal writings that were not political or did not put forward a strong point of view on issues, but had not gotten very far on it. Then my birthday arrived and with it came a trip to my primary care doctor for a pre-op ok for surgery. I'm going to have my nose broken and my septum repositioned so I, hopefully, can breathe normally. When I got to the doctor's office the intern I spoke with told me I'm diabetic. Bleepedy bleep bleep!!! It does explain why I put on weight and can't get it off, it is more than the septum, apnea, and increased cortisol levels from those problems. Well now, at least I can take the proper steps to get my weight and health under control.
But after learning this life changing news, I realized I just want to write. Everything has been pushing me back to writing. This past week with it's birthday bad news crystallized what I need to do with this next stage in my life. All my dissatisfaction, angst, and uncertainty goes away when I am writing. Yes, I still need to find a job, and it is rather disheartening to have no one express interest, but I was terribly over-qualified for my last job so that is a bit of a quandary, but it doesn't matter. Up until 9/11 I wrote copious amounts of stuff of all sorts: freelance articles, poetry, journals, letters, research results, lists. It took facing my own mortality to kick me in the butt and make me see what I have to do in this next stage of life: WRITE!
In spite of it all, ain't life grand?