Saturday, May 26, 2012

Back in the Saddle Again

Okay, I'm not literally back in the saddle. Injuries from my ill-spent youth prevent me from being able to ride. The saddle in question is the recliner in our great room where I sit typing this post. It has been too long since my last blog post. Real life got in the way.

My father-in-law developed pneumonia in February, which caused major complications with his sarcoidosis and pulmonary hypertension. The result was a choice between his going into a nursing home, or our moving to Florida to help look after him. Sarah and I chose to move.

Ours was a rather rapid exit from Kentucky. Within a month, and with a lot of help from our friends and family, we packed our belongings, left our jobs, canceled our scheduled appearances, and moved eleven hundred miles from nearly everyone we knew. As a result, writing in general and my blog in particular were put out to pasture.

We are slowly getting settled into our new lives here. Sarah's dad is much better than when we arrived. His memory isn't what it was before the collapse, and he is pretty much confined to a wheelchair. We've gotten ramps built, a handicapped shower installed, and other needed changes around the house finished. The two of us have sort of settled into the back half of the duplex, which gives us and her parents some privacy.

I think the move was the best decision for all of us. Her folks won't be able to live on their own again. At seventy-one, Sarah's mother can't manage his oxygen, wheelchair, walker, and the other necessities of getting him moved from one place to another. She also finds talking to all of his therapists and doctors a chore better delegated to us. The same is true of paying bills, shopping, dealing with ordering oxygen and medicines, and handling most problems that come up.

So what happens when a writer becomes the primary caretaker for a family member? Writing suffers. That doesn't mean writers stop writing. I started out small, doing a weekly column for, then went back to work on my book. Now, I am back to my blog. Stay tuned, and you might see a new book review soon.