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Ten years I almost forgot

Usually when people who haven’t seen me in the long time ask what I’ve been up to, my answer is the same: Nothing.

Everything is the same, nothing has changed, this is my life.

But it’s not true.

I might not be where I expected to be by now, or have what I thought I’d have, but my life has been far from tedious, and it’s about time I admitted it. So, without much emphasis on details, here’s just a quick list of some of the things I might have forgotten to mention if you ever asked me what I’ve been doing since 2006. And after reading this, I hope you’ll make your own list — for your blog, for your Facebook page, or for yourself – just a reminder of all the little things in life worth remembering and celebrating!


At Le Pain Quotidien, with my niece, in NYC

  • Bought a house
  • Started playing the old clarinet again
  • Photographed three weddings
  • Went to my 12-year high school reunion
  • Gave the sermon at church five times… with a sixth coming up soon
  • Took four overnight skiing trips — and didn’t die
  • Met my best friend
  • Ran a 5K
  • Wrote a 50,000-word novel in November — seven times
  • Performed the Verdi Requiem, Carmina Burana, and Bach’s St. John Passion with the Masterworks Chorus at Shepherd University
  • Was a bridesmaid in my brother’s wedding
  • Attended a Pakistani wedding reception
  • Become an aunt twice over
  • Took my husband’s niece on a “Christma-Birth-uation” road trip to NYC
  • Took another niece to the local premier of a 14-year-old writer/director’s horror movie
  • Saw Aerosmith and Hootie and the Blowfish in concert
  • Interviewed LeAnn Rimes over the phone and Candace Cameron Bure in person
  • Saw Phantom of the Opera twice at the Kennedy Center
  • Saw various other local stage productions
  • Traveled the entire East Coast, from Montreal to The Bahamas
  • Went tubing and kayaking on the Shenandoah River

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A new day


In a special Saturday edition of my blog, I voice an issue that has caused havoc here at The Unwritten Chapter: Thursday is not the best day for blogging — not anymore.

In considering the merit of the week’s other days, I’ve always shot down each one. After all, something always can present itself on those days to make blogging difficult. I recently read or heard somewhere that if you want to give God a good laugh, just tell Him about your plans. The same goes for Thursdays.

In recently weeks I’ve been able to contend with the challenges that Thursday brings by writing ahead of time, usually on Wednesday during my Shut-up & Write online group session with Shenandoah Valley Writers. But when I use that two hour writing period for blogging, I’m not using it for noveling, and my novel has a vicious jealous streak.

Then this week, I abandoned all forms of creative writing. My enthusiasm for the writing I do at work suffered. When you’re on deadline and the writing has to happen, you’ll find a way to do it, but it won’t necessarily be good, and it definitely won’t be fun. I’ve been living in a sort of fog all week, and it wasn’t until Wednesday at 8:55 p.m. that I really noticed. It was time for Shut-up & Write, and I didn’t care.

It was the first time since December that I didn’t participate in that Wednesday night session, the first time that I hadn’t been looking forward to it all day. This time, it totally fell off my radar.

I guess we all go through periods of feeling like life — or whatever — has thrown one too many punches and has to expend very little effort to keep us down for the count. It’s the “whatever” that’s so…well, whatever.

To feel blindsided by the attack is to feel like it must have been my fault: Why wasn’t I more dedicated to what I do? How could I have let a whole week go by without breaking out of the wake up/prepare for work/drive to work/work 8 hours/drive home/have dinner/watch The West Wing/go to bed cycle? I guess I should be glad it didn’t last longer than a week.

But now the question becomes, Do I go back to how things were before, or do I try something else? Do I choose a new day for posting my blog each week or return to jumping through hoops in order to make Thursday work? I did choose Thursday for a reason. It wasn’t as menacing as Monday or Friday seemed, and I knew of at least two other bloggers who already have Wednesday, and it’s silly but I didn’t want to steal their day. Likely I’ll have to write the blog ahead of time to make any day work. So I return to Thursday. And Thursday pummels me into the ground. Again.

I remember when Thursday was my favorite–my high school love. It was the only day that let me breathe, the only one not scheduled with an after-school activity or job. Now, 16 years later, it’s stifling, but still I want it to be my day, even though I know it’s ridiculous to think it would be the same. We’ve grown apart, Thursday and me.

So, I’ve come to a difficult conclusion. Since no one day will work every week, I’m choosing a progressive schedule: A new day every week. You can’t see me, but in just thinking of the possiblity, I’m smiling. Really smiling.

Today’s post was on Saturday. Next week’s will be on Sunday, Feb. 24.


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