It’s so strange… think about the year 2000 and how we were all excited (and maybe a little scared) for the new millenium. That was the year before I met my husband, in the days when I was young(er) and life was stressful but still fun. Every day was an adventure. To put that into perspective, that was 23 years ago!!! Sheesh!!
I haven’t made any secret of the fact that 2022 was probably the most difficult year I’ve ever had to face. We lost my dad, quite suddenly, on January 5. Out of the blue. I had spoken to him one day and in the next, he was gone. Just like that. My dad and I were very close. He was a wise man with a great sense of humor. Sometimes we had these long, drawn out conversations and he’d just talk about anything and everything. I miss those conversations, but I’m so grateful for them. As the first anniversary of his death approaches, I’m trying to find peace with it. Life goes on – and so do I.
In March of 2022, my mother was formally diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Even though we could see it coming, the diagnoses was still a blow. My mom was a special ed teacher for 25 years, a very smart and focused woman. She paints. She golfs. She bowls. She was from a big Southern family and, as the eldest, kind of became the matriarch when my grandmother died. Her Alzheimer’s manifests itself as memory loss, mostly. She can still do everything else, but her memory is like Swiss cheese. Tons of holes in it. She and my dad were married for 58 years. He had been her one and only sweetheart (they met in college). Watching her mourn has been a lesson in grace. But, it has been extremely difficult to watch, as you can imagine. Life goes on for her, too.
Two days after we buried my dad, we moved into our new home. My dad was so excited about it – it’s a home on the National Historical Register. He was so looking forward to exploring the place. As it was, he never got to see it except on the listing. As you can imagine, it was a very bittersweet moment for me when we moved in, but I have grown to love this home so much. I know my dad would have totally loved it, too. But I will confess – my dad liked to ‘tinker’… and sometimes it wasn’t so good. We laugh about how my dad would have found so much in this house to tinker with (boy, did he like to mess around!!), so the fact that he’s not trying to restructure my fuse box (no, he was not an electrician) is probably a good thing. LOL. Sorry, Dad!
Then, there was my mom and dad’s home of 51 years. Yep, they lived in it 51 years. It’s a 1929 Tudor. Such a beautiful place. But over the past 15 years or so, somewhere during that time, my dad just stopped taking care of it. Sometimes we don’t realize how ailing a place is if we see it every day. We get used to the cracks, the roof, the damage, the termites, the ants, etc…. so, once we moved my mom out of the house because of her diagnoses, my brother and I were tasked with repairing our childhood home. Holy Cow, has that been an adventure. An incredible mess that is now, fortunately, much better. As you can see, 2022 has been a lot for me – and this isn’t even half of it.
Therefore, I’m ready welcome 2023. I’m ready for a new year which will hopefully be better than the last one. To you, my reader, I wish you the very best of the new year. I wish you joy and prosperity. Most of all, I wish you peace. Please know how grateful I am for YOU. Without you, there is no me. Thank you for reading my books and loving them. I couldn’t do it without you.