In spite of the euphoria of having finished my novel, and once the Christmas/New Years celebrations were over, planning my next moves, the past few weeks have been somewhat chaotic. Instead of getting terribly distracted, I've tried to create a semblance of order so that I could stay focused on my next plans.
Things were going along fairly serenely after the holiday season and I was relaxing, taking time to sort out what to do next, in order of important. For one thing, I'm giving the novel a rest (at least, giving my brain a rest and refused to let the characters keep bugging me after that first few days. Now I am not thinking about it so constantly other than what next?) What next will be the editing and I have plans to begin it the weekend I go up the mountain to Sun Peaks Resort. Yes! What a grand surprised to be invited up to the resort by my daughter and her partner to celebrate their birthdays and the visit of my grandson and his girlfriend from California. There'll be other people there as well, as it seems they have rented a condo or something, but as many of the guests will be skiing or 'boarding I figure it will be a good time to start the editing (on the page first, before I edit the on-line manuscript which I'll do once I get home.)
Then I made plans about what to do with my writing next. Once I had preps made for my Winter classes, I knew it was time to start catching up on the list of travel stories I have yet to produce. And I also promised myself to blog and write in my journal more frequently. This is the writing part of the program. I also had promised myself to get more consiencious about exercising and getting myself to the waterfit classes. And as two of my morning groups are cancelled that frees up this important time for me.
Then, with plans all made, there was a glitch that turned things into a bit of disorder over the past couple of weeks. First, I agreed to doggie sit with my friends dear little Pom and at that time my friend from Washington was coming up for a reunion weekend of fun. The same day I got Nikki here, Corinne was coming here to visit, got lost on the Drive, let her dog Napoleon out for a pee, and he got struck by a car and killed. It was a trauma like I've not seen in some time. My friend was totally devastated to the point where she was incoherent, and once safely here (dead dog stored on my balcony) she started self-medicating herself til I thought she herself would O.D. Meanwhile little doggie Nikki who is very elderly, wouldn't eat or drink water and was hardly able to walk or stand. By the end of that week I sent her off to the vets who said there was nothing wrong with her. Meanwhile, my friend's daughter flew up to take charge of her mother and we convinced Cor that she couldn't cart the dead dog back over the border but must get it cremated. That problem solved, they finally went back home, but by then I was totally stressed out. The care of the little doggie proved stressful as well because I was worried about her and afraid she might pass away while in my hands. My friend (Nikki's mom) arrived back from holidays last night and from today I am trying to get back a semblance of order in my life. You might say I have coined a new meaning to the expression "Dog Tired."
But it doesn't end there: Besides my dear Welsh cousin Shiela having a stroke the end of November and not responding to treatment, another close friend is near dying in hospital from pneumonia and congestive heart failure, and another very good friend who was one of our role models because of her vibrant, healthy life, had a burst appendix which damaged her bowels and is now incapacitated and probably will be forever confined to care. It's all a huge shock and hard not to think about it and feel very depressed and upset.
I'm glad I have my writing (and classes) to distract me at times like this. One begins to feel terribly mortal and vulnerable when friends start falling. Fortunately I am healthy and stay active. I absolutely HAVE to because I have to get this novel completely tidied up and marketed. And as travel writing is part of my income, I need to focus on getting those stories written!
Hence I am trying distract myself from the stressful things that are happening around me. Of course they are on my mind, especially my dear friends who are in such dire straights, but I must not let depressing thoughts take over in place of those important creative ones. I must create a semblance of order out of all the events that have been and are happening. There's lots of work to be done ahead of me. I can't afford to stray off course, no matter what!
Sculpture in National Gardens, Athens