I have crapped around with how to write a writer’s blog that deals with how I feel in a writerly way, but I can’t. So I’m just going to say what happened.
My father-in-law died this past weekend after a valiant struggle with Parkinson’s and a week-long vigil at his bedside. I stayed home much of that time to take care of the dogs and cats so my husband didn’t have to worry about anything. Yet, my mind was in that room the whole time. I didn’t write. I didn’t want to. Somehow, spending time doing normal things seemed sacrilegious. So I did abnormal things (for me, anyway). I cleaned the fridge. I sorted files. Dusted, vacuumed, swept, and washed dishes.
The few times I tried to write this blog, I stalled out after just a sentence or two. I thought I could write about how to overcome distractions as a writer, but it seemed wrong to call my father-in-law’s death a distraction, and I didn’t have any advice anyway. The fact is there are more important things in life than trying to write a blog, or revising a picture book manuscript, or researching elephants. The fridge and the dishes weren’t important either, but they were my way of acknowledging that my life has changed in a profound way.
One thing I loved about my father-in-law, Bob Thomas, was how passionately he enjoyed beautiful things. He loved photographing the sunsets off of Cape Cod, capturing the ever-changing play of color, light and shadow. He could call chickadees, loved jazz, and told bad puns. He was silly, especially with his grandkids who shared his enthusiasm for giant bubbles and soaring kites.
He had his serious side too. He knew there was work to be done.
But then again -- look at that sunset!
Thanks Dad! I love you.