It’s been a while….

That is just not referring to my little hiatus from blog writing. It is referring to a lot of aspects of my life. My writings, my career, my friends. It has all slipped through the cracks over the last month or two. Today was the first day that I had the time and energy to dedicate a full work day (roughly 8-10hrs) to my still budding web design and social media marketing business. A friend of mine needed a new website built for his carpet cleaning and commercial office cleaning business, and though I have been slowly putting it together over the last two weeks, I have just not had time or energy to fully devote time to it. While working today I took a fifteen minute break to contemplate what happened over the last two months and why I let it happen. 

My writings. By writings I mean everything from the continued editing of my fiction novel, my blog and the ongoing process of attempting to get a book deal for the novel. What happened? I actually quite my nanny job so I had more time to focus (well, okay I quit because the parents were bat shit crazy) and I have found that since quitting I have done less work than I did when I had 12 hours of my life taken away from me each day by my nanny job and then probably another 3 or 4 by my web business. No progress has been made, no query letters have been sent, no editing has been done. Where did my grand goal of trying to get some kind of a book deal within the next year go? What happened to me?

My budding career is hit and miss lately. I have been on a roll having project after project, but nothing really too steady. Mostly it is websites, which I LOVE doing because it is fun, it is different every time and well, let’s be honest it makes me the most money. Nothing too steady though that I can depend on day after day, month to month though. The only person I have to blame for this is myself. I have slacked so bad on marketing my marketing abilities. Redundant huh? Part of that is my blog. As much as I am sure you all love reading all the thoughts that are in my head, the blog is part of marketing my abilities as a writer for freelance writing jobs. I tell every client that they should be posting minimum 1 post every 10 days or so and I can not even get myself to post that often.

My friends are a whole different can of worms. Unlike the other two things I have let slide, I am fully aware of the almost sole reason I have kind of pushed them all to the side. I canceled my wedding. Nobody freak out, I am still engaged and super happy with my fiancé and can’t wait to be a Mrs.! but, things (that will be detailed in a moment) happened and my family could no longer afford the insane cost of a wedding. My four best friends and I had gone dress shopping (yes, I had my princess moment and cried when I put on the dress), they had looked for brides maids dresses, I had found a venue, my friend who is a DJ had agreed to do my wedding for just travel expenses. It was all planned and then BOOM! reality check. Life just is not nice when it comes to this type of thing is it?

So, I guess it’s time for the explanation of my life crumbling out from under me for months. It started the first week of May. I lost my grandmother, the only grandparent I ever had. She fought for as long as she could, but with already life threatening health problems, her diagnosis of rare and aggressive lung cancer and 8 weeks to live was still hard to handle. I will never forget the phone call. It was a Sunday, my fiancé and I were having a lazy day and my dog Hades was acting odd. He was extra snuggly and would not leave my side, Hades is normally a very lackadaisical dog. He will occasionally get up and remind you to scratch behind his ears, but on this day, he was in my lap refusing to let me out of his sight all day. The call came early afternoon. My phone rang and I went into my bedroom, as my phone was on the charger, and saw it was my mother. My heart immediately skipped a beat as I answered. I heard it in her voice as I heard her say “Sara…” She really did not need to keep talking. I collapsed right there. I had rug burn where my knees hit the floor. The first thing I felt was Hades nudging me to make sure I knew he was right there for me. After a few moments, and saying goodbye to my mother, I pushed myself up to face my fiancé. His mother passed away a few years ago from the same thing and he knew the look on my face and immediately jumped up to hug me. This was the beginning of two weeks of on and off grief and the end of my wedding plans. As I let my life spiral momentarily out of control in the wake of my grief, my mother and my aunt dealt with the cold truth that is burying your loved one. The only thing that is even more insanely expensive for no reason than a wedding is a funeral and burial. Except that now we were being screwed by an insurance company in the process. Over $15,000 later, we are fighting an insurance company that only wants to give us $200 for it all. Losing my wedding would not usually cause me so much grief, but the last thing my grandmother said to me, the last time I saw her (a week before she passed) was to keep planning my beautiful wedding and that when I walked down the isle she would be with me. It was not so much about losing my dream wedding as it was I felt like I let my grandmother down in some way by giving up the wedding plans. It is pain I still feel, I don’t think I will ever stop feeling as I am still crying about those words at this very moment.

The other reason my life has slowly gotten away from me? Moving. FUCK. MOVING. Please excuse my language as I typically don’t write in a profane manner (I do enough swearing when I talk, it does not need to spill over into my writing), but fuck moving. We started our house search about two months before the end of our lease. This was about the same time last year that we began our search, so we did not think much of it until any place that we liked REFUSED to hold the house for more than two weeks. Seriously? I had my last home on hold a month before we moved in and NOW these jerk faced property managers want no more than a two week hold? FINE. Have your two week hold. We lost two places we liked because of that stupid policy. We lost the place of our dreams because they property managers did not like our application as much as they liked someone else’s and without so much as an email to me or my realtor about it either. Memorial day rolls around, at 7am I got a property search notification and the house was PERFECT. It was in the neighborhood we wanted, it is less than five miles from my fiancés’ job and we moved so fast that no one else had a chance to even look at it before our application was in. We got them to extend the damn 2 week hold so we had a few extra days and everything was moving along wonderfully.

Once everything got moved is where my lovely career was derailed slightly. My office is where all the boxes of stuff we did not know what to do with were put. My office is literally just a pile of boxes. It is hard to work when you have no where to work. I despise mixing my spaces. My bedroom is where I relax, watch netflix, play video games and sleep. My living room is where I watch television, play with my dogs and entertain. My dinning room is where I eat meals. WHERE THE HELL AM I SUPPOSE TO WORK WHEN MY OFFICE IS JUST A PILE OF BOXES?????? Yes, that sentence really did deserve all caps. I have been sitting in literally the same chair all day in my living room using a large ottoman as a desk space to build an entire website.

So here I am, at the end of my work day, making my first attempts at getting back on course after my two month detour. First of all, I AM A WRITER! have articles you need written? I CAN DO THAT! No really, I have degrees in communications, I went to graduate school. I even presented papers at regional and national conferences. I know what I am doing! I do websites! Websites are fun! I do not have to be in your area to help you out! I am great with phone meetings, I LOVE google hangouts and Skype which allow me to screen share so we can be on the same page when going over the site! Contact me (hence the whole contact page thing in the menu up top!) No seriously, do it! I am cheaper than most firms you will talk to since I am freelance! I also do social media marketing. I am awesome with business pages on Facebook and twitter I can turn $100 of your advertising money into 150+ likes and follows in less than a month (no guarantees but that is the average I have achieved!). And again, I’m cheaper than any reputable firm!

Step two, I am going to go write and edit and figure out my next move in becoming a published author. Going along with that, if any of you have ties to agents or publishers or are published, leave me a comment or contact me through my contact page because I would LOVE some advice on what to do next and how I can up my chances of getting a book deal. Would love it! 

Step three, tell my friend what happened and accept the sympathetic looks and talk I will have to go through when I tell them that I lost my grandmother, I lost my wedding and I was too afraid of how many tears I would spill telling them that I waited two months to say it. 

Thanks for reading my ramblings. Hopefully I will stick to my ten day timeline and have some more to write about in ten days or less!!

~S~

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Letting Go….

Letting go of someone you love is never easy. It is probably one of the hardest parts of being a human, coping with the death of a loved one. I am not going to pretend to be an expert on this subject, I have never lost a family member who I was close to, or I was too young to remember the death. In the near future it seems I will be facing the inevitable and saying goodbye to my maternal Grandmother.

My Grandmother is the only grandparent I ever knew. My father’s parents passed away before I was born and my mother’s father was never around. As for other deaths in my family, my step father passed away a few years ago, but we never got a long and though I sympathized for my mother, it was not emotional for me. Last year my mother’s sister passed away, and though losing an Aunt is typically a sad thing, I never really knew her. My mother had a lot of siblings and I was only ever really close to one of them. So again, I sympathized with my mother, but I was not too emotional over the situation.

Which brings me to now. No, my grandmother has not passed away yet, but early last Friday morning my Grandmother woke my aunt up having terrible chest pains and was taken to the hospital by ambulance. My grandmother is not the picture of health, so the phone tree started and soon I found myself being the one to call my mother and tell her the news. I waited patiently for any news they had, and was upset to learn that my grandmother would need a quadruple bypass surgery. Heart surgery is a MAJOR thing, even if WebMd and other articles say that it is a routine surgery with low chances of complications, to preform the surgery they stop your heart and lungs and use a machine to pump blood and oxygen to your body. My first thought of course is what happens if they go to restart the heart and it doesn’t work?

None of this mattered though, the day after hearing this news I received a distressed phone call from my mother informing me that the surgery had been taken off the schedule. When admitted to the hospital, my grandmother underwent a series of scans and her CT scan showed a large amount of nodules in her lungs. Once a specialist had reviewed the scans he informed my family that my grandmother would most likely only live for another month or two, so to do the surgery would mean she would spend her remaining time alive bed ridden and recovering from surgery instead of enjoying her days with family. It was revealed that my grandmother has a severe and advanced form of lung cancer. 

The amount of feelings you go through when you hear this kind of news is overwhelming. It probably took me a good fifteen minutes to regain the ability to speak. From there, it ranged from feeling completely numb to wanting to curl into a ball and never venture back into the world again. I finally settled on distracting myself for the rest of the day until I was ready to face the emotions I as going through. The emotion that hurts the most is the guilt I feel over how little time I have mad for my family over the past few years. I moved away from where I spent my entire life back in 2007 and my last visit there was in 2009 when I was going on a trip to Ireland with a friend and we departed from there. Since then, I have completely devoted myself to my education and career.

My grandmother is proud of everything I have done with my life. I would never for a moment doubt that she is fully okay with how I have chosen to live my life, but the feeling of guilt is so horrible to deal with. It is almost paralyzing in a way, I don’t want to do anything. I do not want to eat, I do not want to sleep, I do not want to work, I do not want to write. All I do is stare blankly at a wall pretty much asking myself why I did not take the time to go visit more often. Why, every year, did I say that I would visit the next year and then never go. For about two years, I would visit my grandmother every day after school (this was after I had turned 16 and received my drivers license). Then I moved away and never looked back. It is a terrible feeling. It is terrible talking to her now and hearing her say that she misses the days when I would just drop in to see her every day and how she hopes I come visit her soon.

I will be visiting my grandmother soon, but knowing I will see her soon does nothing to alleviate the guilt I have that it took a dire diagnosis for me to finally book a plane ticket. I have never lost someone who has truly occupied a large part of my heart. Just the thought of losing my grandmother makes me feel like I am going to break into a million pieces, but it does serve to teach me a valuable lesson. Never take for granted that there is always another day. I assumed that I had time with my grandmother and that I could always visit her, I assumed that she would be sitting at my wedding next year and would be taking photos with me and future husband. As my heart breaks, my eyes open and I see that I can no longer put off tomorrow what can be done today.