For me, it began last year with the passing of my uncle. I've always understood the grieving process is different for everyone, but knowing and experiencing it are two different things. Attending the funeral and memorial service offered me a mixed bag of emotions--I loved seeing my family and reconnecting, but a great gaping hole stood there with us. The tear in the fabric my uncle once occupied.
He always had a laugh. He always used to tease me and adored to be teased in return. He had this larger than life laugh. One that invited you to join in the fun. It was infectious and delightful. There were moments during his service where a wholly inappropriate thought cropped up, a snatch of laughter and I imagined it was he whispering in my ear.
Returning to Normalcy
Coming home, we returned to our lives. Yet I couldn't shake the sense of loss in everything, it seemed to make the sky a little less brighter, the days a smidgen less joyful. I miss ed my uncle and yet intellectually I couldn't reconcile the emotion with the fact that my uncle and I didn't see each other that often. But I'd always taken such comfort in knowing he was out there, and of thinking bout the next time I would see him.
Mini went into her freshman year at high school and got crazy busy, and the holidays came and though I don't share deeply personal stuff that often, my husband and I reconciled last year and it remains a work in progress as we repair and rebuild our relationship. Fortunately, we remain the best of friends and we care so we have a good foundation. We took a family vacation, had a blast and I was writing like the wind--or as fast as I could.
Still, through all of this, I am missing my uncle. Mini auditioned for a role in Shrek the Musical and earned it, thus began a several month odyssey of rehearsals and crazy schedules. Leap forward to January, I'm on a number of deadlines and trying to say ahead while juggling the kiddo's schedule and more. My mother-in-law turned up at my home, somewhat delirious and running a 104 temperature. Long story short, she was gravely ill and out of it. She came to us for help. It took a couple of days to convince her she had to go to the hospital, they admitted her with pneumonia and sepsis.
Scary times. They had trouble getting her pulse ox up as well as getting her temp under control. While we coped with MIL's hospitalization and related worries. I got a call from my mother--she told me she had cancer.
|Omega Team Kindle Worlds|
|Southern Shifters Kindle Worlds|
My mother-in-law continued to improve and I put out a couple of novellas while preparing for the Wild Wicked Weekend, the awesome party in San Antonio hosted by the Belle Femme authors. I was also all geared up for a release I am so over the moon about doing. Royals & Rogues is a project I got to work on with my beloved Carole Mortimer, an author I grew up reading and whom I totally adore.
It's available now, by the way (*wink* *wink* *nudge* *nudge*)
|Kindle | Nook | Kobo | iBooks | ARe|
As I drove to pick up my friend Kim and make our trek to San Antonio, I felt the months of stress melting away from me and a soft voice whispered in my ear--"Don't forget to laugh, luv. Don't forget to laugh."
|Love my Kim!|
My uncle had been with me the whole time, so I laughed all week. I played. I relaxed and I embraced my joy. Living life out loud can be a colorful, wild and sometimes tempestuous experience, but inevitably it's worth it. So from me to you...live life out loud! Don't forget to laugh! Laugh loud! Laugh long!