Trying to measure where the last two years have disappeared is like trying to hug a passing cloud. I could no more complete an after action report accounting for the time than I could return to working full time every day.
Often, an inner voice urges me to accomplish more than I have done, yet another voice reminds me that I have crossed off a few bucket-list items. Sometimes I yearn for more, but today, I choose to focus on those things that have brought me pleasure and a sense of fulfillment.
Writing tops my list of achievements. No, I cannot proclaim a best-seller, but I did publish my first book, Peaks and Valleys. The non-fiction memoir begins in the 50’s in my childhood hometown of Pine Lawn, Missouri. As indicated by the title, many of the tales brought a smile to my face as I wrote them. Some of them were written as tears fell from my eyes. Revisiting the happy, and sometimes painful, times of my life had a therapeutic consequence. When I finished, it brought me peace, comfort and an appreciation for the experiences that made me whom I am today. The journey is worth taking, for everyone. I hope others will be inspired to follow my path and clean out a few of their own closets along the way. The book is available through Amazon.com and Kindle.
I also wrote a second book, Burning Embers, for which I am currently searching for a publisher. Writing a romance/suspense novel in thirty days was not on my original bucket list, rather it was a challenge introduced to me through a writing club that I joined named Pen to Paper Writing Club. I found the experience so rewarding that I drafted an outline for my next novel which I will begin shortly. Who knew I had an imagination?
The poet in me continues to surface whenever I cannot find the words to speak directly to friends and family. I have contemplated publishing some of my poems, but finding gratification in the positive effect the words provide the person for whom they were written is enough for now.
As a multi-tasking person, all that writing wasn’t quite enough to keep me busy, so I began this blog. My social media skills are limited and until one of my fellow writers encouraged me, I had never visited a blog site. Now I follow a few that tickle my interests or touch my soul. I’m still in the beginning stages, but I find it another way to release the writer in me. (http://authordianemhow.com)
More recently, I began volunteering with VITAS Hospice Care as a Story Keeper. This rewarding opportunity entails recording life stories of patients who are in hospice care so that they may leave a treasure for their loved ones and future generations. I wrote about my first visit in one of my blogs. It is amazing how God directs us on our journey to the right place at the right time. If you have any doubts about following His lead, read When you volunteer are you giving or receiving?.
Every day has not been as uncomplicated as this post makes it sound, but as I said, today, I am sticking with the positive, happy times. My husband and I have found time to fish, gamble and spend time with our daughter and her boyfriend. We’ve even managed to get in a few short trips to Branson, Lake of the Ozarks and Georgia. Lunch and dinner dates fill a few of the squares on my calendar and provide me with the chance to catch up with family, friends, former co-workers and my wonderful Girl Scout buddies.
I yearn to know what memories filter through when you look back a few days, months or years.