You’ve likely noticed a pretty significant drop in my output of late, and I’d like to explain why.
First off, I’m spending a great deal of time and energy in caring for my mother, who is 94 and was recently diagnosed with moderate dementia. She has severe mobility issues, still live alone in the family home, with my sister living next door and me about 25 minutes away. My sister is pretty sick too with a fairly rare autoimmune disorder and associated flare ups and consequent conditions that especially of late have rendered her less than able to do all she typically does. Hence, I’ve been there a lot handling issues and daily concerns, including estate and insurance stuff related to the estate of my late father. It’s a lot and is both physically and emotionally exhausting, so my energy for doing this work is pretty depleted, though I’m still up by first light most mornings to try.
Second, my finances are disastrous right now; my consulting practice, always slow at this time of year, has been downright anemic and I’m scrambling for every dollar. That takes time and energy, too.
Third — on top of everything else, my own health is not great. Diabetes complications like neuropathy in my feet and fingers makes it very hard to do certain daily tasks and adds to my exhaustion at the end of the day. There is, also, a cognitive problem going on — short term memory issues and ability to negotiate complex thinking at times aren’t easy to deal with, and I’m usually pretty much in a fog by late afternoon and evening on many days. (Not saying more about this issue, and not entertaining advice. I know what’s going on. Some of it is aging, some of it is not. Right now, that’s all I’m going to say.)
I recently received an award for a history of achievements and support of poetry in this area. It was sweet, but I’m unable to think of it as other than a “lifetime achievement award.” Can’t help thinking the the timing is about right for that. (A joke, but more than a little sobering.)
Still, I’m plugging away at a full length manuscript; still doing readings; still producing work and maintaining my Patreon site as an alternate way of getting work out there and generating income. I’m still here, and I hope that certain things my sister and I are doing to bring professional in home care to my mom will ease some burdens in relatively short order.
Thanks for reading. Still here, a little slower than before, but still going. I’ll be here as long as I can be. Promise.