Hi. So, um … it’s 2018. The end of 2018. That was unintentional.
It’s been nearly two years since I’ve written here, and what a two years. Really, what a year. 2017 was fairly uneventful as far as years go, but 2018 has been something else. I’m tempted to call it an unreasonably shitty year, but then there have also been some AMAZING things in my life this year. I’m going to split the difference and call 2018 the most bipolar year I’ve ever experienced and dedicate it to myself.
To start with the good, I’ve gotten back into writing fiction in a big way, including attending the Surrey International Writer’s Conference in October. That was possibly the best experience of my life. On the tail end of that, I took four unpaid weeks off of work to get my head on straight. I needed to examine a thousand and one things, foremost of which was what I want to do from here on out. The answer wasn’t altogether unsurprising when I finally figured it out. I’d like to transition at some point into working at, or perhaps owning, a bookstore.
But time away from work also allowed me to gain some perspective on my current career. If you’ve read much of this blog, you’ll know that I’ve been burned out for years. I was preparing to take time off when I was hired into a new department in 2016, and it’s been an uphill battle to get out of bed looking forward to work ever since. Thankfully, by the time I came back from my leave in November, I was excited to get back to work. I was excited to see what challenges would come up, and that remains true now that I’ve been back a full three weeks.
The best thing, of course, that changed in 2018 was the addition of an itty-bitty person. My sister delivered an 8 lb, 4 oz screaming machine earlier this year who has now learned to smile and then scream. Really, she’s a delight. (I don’t get asked to babysit much. Not sure why.)
But the bad of 2018 has been … bad. My estranged father passed away in May, which is a whole post of its own (condolences are not necessary; just tell someone you haven’t talked to in awhile that you love them). His mother is now in hospice, so I’m headed north to see her for the first time since 1998. Friends have lost family members, are being put through various financial, medical, and emotional hells, and it’s just been a lot.
And if you want to toss in that one of my senators died and the other resigned, I’m not thrilled over those changes to the American political landscape, either.
I’m ready to wave goodbye to 2018 and threaten 2019 into obedience.
My flight is getting ready to land, so I’ll wrap this up. I hope you all had much better 2017s and 2018s than I did. I look forward to adding this blog back to my writing regimen in the coming weeks.