I don't know where this is going, or if I want to continue my blog, but here goes for now...
|Sunset on the Ohio River|
My mom's passing about 15 months ago affected me much more than I expected. Preparing for her death was so different than preparing for life without her. There is still a profound sadness at her not being here to share in daily life, and I miss the phone calls and the visits and the laughter. And there are still tears when I least expect them.
Then there is the realization that I am an adult now responsible for all my own decisions without a parent to run things by. Crazy I know, at age 61. Then the other day I realized I didn't have a parent looking over my shoulder at how I was doing things. And you know that lack of "critiquing" was a bit of a relief. Recently I realized that I was no longer living to please my parents. That was a weird but liberating feeling.
|Getting out for a walk|
I spent a lot of time with her after these surgeries, and I was so happy to be there for her. I was fortunate to be retired and only a few hours away. Because of my own battle with breast cancer 7 years ago, it felt like we were kindred spirits tackling this together. In some ways it was very cathartic to help her, and in other ways all those painful memories from my past came crashing back like that rogue wave that knocks you over when you are aimlessly walking down the beach. Just when you think those feelings are all worked out, you realize they aren't far from the surface. Anyway, she is doing very well now with another surgery scheduled for next year. And she has a great positive attitude which is the best possible situation.
|Lunch with Mike in Cinque Terre, Italy|
We simply loved Tuscany. It was breathtakingly beautiful, and the people were warm and welcoming. The food and wine were amazing, and we agree that if we ever had to leave this country, we are probably headed to Tuscany. Ok, I know that probably sounds very weird, like we're going to be in the witness protection program or something. No plans for that so don't jump to any conclusions if I don't continue with the blog...
|No lack of mud on the Jeep Jamboree|
We traveled to Pennsylvania for a Jeep Jamboree. We spent a long weekend in the beautiful woods driving over coal roads and testing our Jeep and Mike's driving capabilities. We all survived very well, thank you!
|The Pacific Ocean|
We also visited Portland, Oregon and soaked in the beauty of the countryside including the beach and Mt. Hood. And then there was a family trip to Nashville, TN and several trips to Ohio for my nephew's graduation from The Ohio State University and my niece's wedding shower and wedding.
|Brian and Allie|
|Family trip to Nashville|
|My hollow form ring|
And we continue with jewelry classes which are a wonderful way to learn and keep the brain sharp. Hours can fly by when I'm intently working on a jewelry creation. I was fortunate to win best of show for the Jewelry and Metalsmithing section of the Student Art Show. I think luck was on my side for that one!
But you know I survived the year ok and am feeling more optimistic about what is ahead. I recognize a need to write again-not sure what the medium is yet but that will work itself out over time. In the meantime, thanks for being patient. Thanks for encouraging me. And thanks for reading. Take Care, Diane