December is a crazy month for most people. The myriads of parties, school functions, travel hassles, and shopping trips collide with; visiting relatives, birthdays, and anniversaries which compete with; bored kids, menu planning, holiday fun, preparing at least one elaborate meal, and if you’re a football fanatic, cheering on your favorite football team as they fight for a playoff spot. There’s so much to do most of this paragraph is one long sentence.
And the whirlwind of activity isn’t over.
New Year’s celebrations demand your attention. The kids beg to stay up until midnight. You pray you can stay awake that late. Once the clock strikes midnight you toast the new year, followed by comforting your fur babies when the inevitable fireworks (giant bangs and thundering booms) begin. Before you can take a breath everyone wants to know what your resolutions are, which means you have to frantically come up with a few or explain why you don’t make them anymore.
Then January flies in with bad weather, football playoff parties, Christmas gift returns, and the hope that things will calm down soon.
A couple of days before Thanksgiving it was as if I’d run over a patch of black ice and lost control. Headlights, tail lights, headlights, tail lights–white, red, white, red.
I was at the local grocery super store picking up a few items I’d forgotten earlier in the week. While I was crisscrossing the store looking for crayons, I noticed giant pallets of items with multiple signs taped to them that explained how I could only buy these things on a certain day between certain hours. In the grocery section of the store, I experienced cart hit and run three times! And the culprits weren’t kids.
I was dealing with two losses; one from a few years ago and a recent one. I was stressing out over all the other drivers who seem to have forgotten, or never knew, how to drive in the snow. I haven’t yelled at so many other cars since I quit commuting daily. I was fighting off the depression that hovered at the edges of my “I’m barely holding it together” days.
I rejoiced over finding a box of 120 Crayola crayons after checking six stores. I went bananas upon discovering they made a caddy with 152 crayons. I got annoyed because it cost three times as much as the box of 120 crayons.
Later I enjoyed coloring with Princess Cadence and my sister on a Google Hangout, and spent the whole time wishing they were across the table from me.
Then, staggered over a week, my entire family caught the flu from hell. My mom was down for a week and it flattened me for two weeks. Thankfully my dad got it light and was able to make canned soup, otherwise I’d have been crawling into the kitchen to make toast and open a can of applesauce.
Realizing that I haven’t kept promises to myself and others. I didn’t accomplish as much on a major project as I wanted/needed to. The Broncos got knocked out of the playoffs. Because I got sick I didn’t get the last item on my Christmas list. Two of my best beta readers received their Christmas gifts a month late!
I joyfully realized I’d made it on Santa’s ‘nice’ list and now got to enjoy struggling to choose which of the twenty shades of blue looks most like the color of blue jeans. I spent some of my recuperating time coloring with my niece and sister. I hung the pictures on my office walls. They make me happy, and I’m most creative when I am.
As the anniversary of one loss approached I remembered the good times instead of concentrating on the pain. The other loss ended up being an unexpected and joyful reunion that has been a blessing.
Now a good chunk of the way through February I’m happy again. I’m going to commit to publishing one blog post and one newsletter each month. I realize it’s not much, but it’s better than silence.
I’m working hard each day to finish The Fire-Pit. I’m disappointed that I’ve missed every self-imposed deadline I’ve set. After thousands of hours of work, the end is in sight. Thank you to all the special people who have helped me through this journey of writing a book. Without each of you, I wouldn’t have a story that I’m truly proud of.
How were your holidays? Who do you have to thank for helping you get to where you are? Feel free to share your holiday stories or thank you stories in the comments.
P.S. I would have had this post ready sooner, but for the last two days I’ve spent many hours figuring out how to stop two different spam comment attacks. No more have slipped through in the last couple of hours, so I think I beat it. I ran a scan on the site and it’s safe. Thank goodness.