Wednesday, December 21, 2011

My Last Post of the Year

It's less than a week until Christmas. We weren't able to get presents like we usually do but we have the kids' Christmas covered at least and they are looking forward to it. We are also having Christmas dinner which will include all the step kids, their mother, my mother-in-law, my aunt, cousins, a couple of my sisters, and a niece. There may be more. Who knows?

Since it's so close to Christmas and because my Yahoo! beats won't be available until after the 1st, I'm going to take the time "off" to really dig into finishing the final draft of Future Past. This means I also won't post here either. I'm only going to update my client blogs which shouldn't take up much time at all.

I'm not as bah humbug as I was last year about this time but I still harbor an amount of sadness as I realize just how much has changed in my life this year. Never would I have ever imagined that my family would be as fractured as it is. I've found out things about several people I love that have really diminished my faith in humanity in general. I've learned that the ones you look up to most will hurt you the worst. I've learned that standing up for yourself and trying to do what's right will inevitably make people tell you that you're a self important and self righteous person who cares about no one but herself. So as you can see, not a lot of what I've learned this year has been good.

At a time when I was shy, weak, was afraid to put my writing out there, and never voiced my thoughts, I seemed to have more people that cared about me. I learned to start standing up for what I believed in and going after what I wanted in life when I started having kids. Now that I've been doing that, the real in people started coming out and it isn't always pretty.

But I'm realizing that I have more friends than I thought I had, people who do accept me and care about me for who I am and I'd rather appreciate them then I would dwell on those who want to blame me for their own actions.

So for all of you out there who have read what I've written and enjoyed it to the point you looked me up online, thank you from the bottom of my heart. To the woman who lives near my hometown and made me feel really special this week by emailing me and asking me to meet her to sign my haiku calendar, thank you. To the people who support me in my endeavors, thank you. To my online friends who I enjoy bantering with, thank you for just being there and making me smile throughout my day. To my real life friends and family members who are also my friends, I truly appreciate each one of you. I hope your holidays are filled with warmth, love, and smiles.

For whatever you celebrate this time of year, I wish you the best. Merry Christmas from my family to yours.

See ya next year!


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Two and a half (ish) months, post discectomy back surgery update.

I had a discectomy on a severely 
ruptured L5/S1 disk on October 12, 2011. 
This isn't my MRI, but one that illustrates
my problem.
I've had a few of you ask me how my back has been doing since my surgery so I thought I'd update.

I think I must be getting better. I'm having more good days than I am bad lately so that is better, right? I only say this because I guess I was under the mistaken impression that I should be instantly healed or at least be out of pain by now, which I'm not.

That's really all I can say. I can sit for longer now so I've been able to keep up my Yahoo! work and keep my client work up-to-date without too many problems. I've been walking more these days, too, and returning to the gym a little at a time. Part of my left foot, mainly my smaller toes, are still numb and parts of my leg are numb, too, although the only time I can really tell is when I shave my legs. I have pain that still runs from my back, across my backside, to my left hip but it isn't as frequent or to the intensity it has been before.

I guess I expected to be fully recovered by now but I've learned that this is a much longer process than I could have ever imagined. At some point in my life, I'd like to be able to run and jump again but I've accepted the reality that it won't be any time soon. Not that I would just go around running and jumping everywhere, but you get the drift. :) All I can hope for is that I keep getting better.

In the meantime, I am about to return to classes in a few weeks and I hope sitting isn't going to be a problem. I'm also still working on my Future Past rewrite. I just passed 82k, which is the number I was sitting at before I made cuts. Now I'm just filling story holes and I'm hoping to have it sent back to Ms. DeFino before January is over. This coming March will be 2 years since I wrote the first sentence and I'm so excited by how well I think the story is going. I hope I'm not getting my hopes up. It's gotta pass the DeFino test first. :)

Peace, love, and pain relief,


Friday, December 16, 2011

Standing up - Part 2: Life isn't like the movies

Last night I overheard my husband remark to his daughter, "Zeke isn't free anymore." He was referring to the fact that my youngest boy just turned 4 and many of the restaurants in the area will now no longer let him eat free. "And we can't say he's still 3 because of Honest Abe over there," he remarked gesturing toward me. I'm sure he meant it as a joke because he knows how important it is to me to set a good example for the boys. What are they going to learn if I have them lie in a restaurant about how old they are? That lying is okay as long as you're getting something for free?

Even though I knew it was more than likely a joke, I admit (yeah, sometimes I'm a great big wuss) that it does hurt my feelings when completely innocent people poke fun at people who are good natured. I can't tell you how many times I've been called a "goody two-shoes" growing up. It was a contradiction for me to see movies where the good guy always won, for me to see the arrogant prick get the take down he deserved but then go back to reality and see the exact opposite. More often than not, the people with hidden agendas win and it is the good guy who has to suffer the humiliation of failing when he tries to stand up for himself.

And then we wonder why there ain't (yeah, I'm southern; sue me) more good-natured people out there. Who wouldn't feel incredibly withdrawn after a lifetime of "Honest Abe" stabs or being called self-righteous or self-important for only wanting to do what is right?

Twist of Fate

Then I opened up my Facebook this morning to discover that a man who grew up in my community, a man whose family I've known since I was little, is actually a fellow writer who has just released his debut novel, The Mason Jar (by James Russell Lingerfelt). I don't know Russell that well personally; I was more associated with his big brother, country singer/songwriter Dewey Wayne, who was a grade ahead of me in school. I met their father a few years ago and their mother a few months ago and I can easily say they are one of the nicest families you could ever hope to know.

But anywho, back to the point, I found out about the book through our local paper and in the interview, Russell is quoted, "As kids, we grow up, and we are taught by society that if we are the right kind of person, and do the right things that things will work out... Reality tells us that's not true." I thought it a strange coincidence that I read that interview this morning while contemplating the very same things last night.

The book looks very interesting and I can't wait to read it. It's now officially on my (very long) reading list. Congrats to Russell on his debut. I wish you great success!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Something positive for the holidays - Giving thanks!

I want to take a moment to tell you a nice little Christmas story. Just when I see, hear, and read things that are to the detriment of society, I then run across something that restores my faith in the general good.

My cousins and aunt from out of state have been through a very hard time recently. They came to my neck of the woods with little more than the clothes on their backs. They came here because of my sisters and I; with us nearby they would have the emotional support of family to help them tread through this rough patch and turn their lives around. My sisters and I are also struggling (all of us in college) so we haven't been able to do much for them financially.

One of my cousins, a wonderful young man who has recently been saved at one sister's church, has been taking GED classes. I'm not sure what his plans are but he is making great efforts to better his life and I'm so proud of him.

Recently, he thought he had hit it good; he found a way he could take the GED test for free. When you're relying on someone else to take you to classes, while also trying to figure out how you're going to pay for the basic necessities of life, the $50 to take the test was non-existent. But for some reason or another, he found out that the test wasn't free at all. He would still have to pay $50; money that he didn't have and probably wouldn't see for a long time.

Then along comes Santa, who had heard of my cousin's plight, and $50 was sealed and cleverly delivered. We know who this Santa really is but I'm not going to embarrass this person (or have people knocking on this person's door for more money). I just want to thank this Santa. I know $50 isn't a lot to some but in this little family circle, it is. This was probably the best gift my cousin could have gotten this year.

It means a lot to us that there are caring people like you out there who have faith in others. From my family to yours, Merry Christmas and thank you from the bottom of our hearts. :)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Standing up sometimes means standing alone.

There are three kinds of standing up.

1) You can stand up from sitting.
2) You can stand up for yourself against those who would take advantage of you or otherwise bring negativity into your life.
3) You can stand up for what you believe in.

Just to clarify, we'll be discussing the last two kinds of standing up. (But just remember that if you are doing number one, don't do it too fast, especially if you're over the age of 30 and/or suffer from frequent light-headedness.)

It's very easy to tell people to stand up. Sometimes, though, standing up means that you often stand alone. But if you really want to think about it, not standing up is very lonely, too. For a long time, I never stood up for anything. I'd been put down so much that I never believed I could stand up and there were very few times when people stood up for me when I needed it.  For me, that was a very lonely time as well.

That's in the past now. What I've realized since then is that when you stop being that person that people can walk all over, when you stop being that dumping ground, sometimes you lose a little bit of the relationship that you've had with them. In some cases you lose the entire relationship.

Standing up for what you believe in can be equally terrifying. If you stand your ground, you can really damage some relationships and put yourself out on a limb, only to have people spew on you for exercising your right to state your opinion.

This is why it is so hard for a lot of people to grasp what it really means to stand up. When you stand up, someone will always be hurt or offended. That's why when you go out on that limb, you have to be prepared for it to snap and be ready to stand your ground if it does. There are so many people who either can't do that or they have been so wronged that they snap the limb themselves.

To my friends who are not only currently standing up for themselves but also standing up for what they believe in: Please don't feel like you're alone. It's heartbreaking, I know, but you have so many people standing behind you that want to see you through this, even if you don't see them.

And to anyone else battling negativity and discord in their own lives, my best wishes to you. I wish I could stand behind you, too, but there's only so much standing I can do. (Bad back, ya know.) :) Just remember that if you're fighting the good fight, I'm right there with ya in spirit.

Negativity wins when people don't stand up. The world can't change if we keep our mouths shut. Ask yourself: Would you want someone to stand up for you if you were in their situation?  If that answer is yes, then do some standing up of your own.

Peace, love, and courage,


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Taking bets on how long the tree will last.

So my phone doesn't take a good pic but it doesn't need to be extra clear to see the little mischievous creature lurking out from under the left side of the tree.  Between my cat and the two kids, I give my well put together tree less than a week before balls start disappearing.

Peace, love, and getting into the Christmas spirit,


Monday, November 28, 2011

An *Exclusive* 2012 calendar filled with Haiku poetry!

For the last year, I've been working on a calendar that would combine beautiful images with my Haiku poetry.  Each poem is inspired by the month itself.

This Haiku a Month calendar is my first released collection of poetry. Not only would it be a great gift for the poetry lover in your family, it would be a beautiful addition to your home or office. If you click on the cover below, you'll see previews of each month.

And I'll be happy to sign them. Just send them to me with a self addressed stamped envelope to Pamela Caves, PO Box 743, Fyffe, AL 35971. Or if you live near Fyffe, Alabama, email me and we'll set up a place to meet.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Waiter, may I have two Chapter 24s, please?

It's been awhile since I've shared a "here's what I've learned" post about my adventures in writing. I'm inspired to write this post after having just done a Future Past editing marathon which has lasted from 8pm to 11:30pm; well past this boring mom's bedtime.

First of all, I was a little horrified to learn that I'd sent a full manuscript out with not one, but TWO Chapter 24s. If the editor noticed, she certainly didn't tell me. I can hear a huge Homer Simpson "DOH!" ringing in my head. It is late, so initially I thought that I was getting a little too tired and had screwed up the numbering in my outline. But when I went back to double check, I have Chapters 23, 24, 24, and 25. So I guess the lesson here is to run through the manuscript for a solo check on the chronological order of your chapters before you decide it's ready to send out. Better yet, if you run with outlines in much the same way Jacob runs with wolves, then include those chapter numbers in your outline. This is the first time I've actually used chapter numbers in my outline. You can bet that now I will always use them.

The second lesson I've learned thus far with these edits is that the process of coming up with a final draft is much longer than any new writer can really understand. It's not as simple as just writing it and moving on. I wrote the rough draft, then combed through it, making few changes here and there, focusing mostly on grammar and structure. It was then that I thought it was good enough to send out. As it turned out, I was far from it and I'm so lucky that Ms. DeFino liked my concept enough to throw criticism my way.

When she first suggested that I might not finish edits in time for the next submission period, I thought, really? How hard can this be? All I had to do was just go through it again and be on the lookout for the key problems she explained. And I did. But this left me with another problem. I'd cut out so much extra wording that I was barely left with enough words to make up a novel, much less an epic fantasy. So when I started examining other areas of the story, I realized that there were key parts of the story that I hadn't addressed. I do hope to do more novels starring the characters of Future Past, but for now, I needed to focus on one story and fully satisfy the threads of this novel before trying to see what elements I could pluck for the next one.

I feel like I'm making real progress and the story is even more exciting to me the more I dig into it. My main character, Dayel, is more a representation of myself than I've realized before now. She's been through things in her life that has left her feeling like less than a person. She feels too tainted for any kind of better life than what she's been handed. I used to feel like my dreams were out of reach, too, and that I would never be good enough for anyone to ever consider publishing one of my novels. But I know I'm making it with careful hard work and determination. I guess you could say that the real hard work of writing is something I'm learning more about as this process continues, too.

Peace, love, and persistence,


Monday, November 21, 2011

First "Barrier" story to be released early 2012!

Hi, y'all!

I have exciting news! I've gotten the go ahead to announce that my science fiction story, Barrier: Ethics vs. Duty, has been picked up by Fiction Lake! Yes, I do their online management for them but there was no guarantee that they would publish anything I wrote. So I'm pretty much stoked right now. Let me show that here:


Tentative release is early 2012, maybe around April. I'm hoping to get the edits to Future Past completed in the next month or two and then I'll be able to work on the edits for Barrier for its release. This is the first of a series and I hope the next few stories is as well received by the editors as this first has been.

In the meantime, I wish I could jump around but with my back in the shape its in, I don't think that would be a good idea. I'll just jump around in my mind. That still counts, right?

Peace, love, and cartwheels,


"The Hand" by Pamela Caves - Excerpt

 You can purchase The Hand on Smashwords (several formats available), Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or search for it on your favorite site!

Cicely has been experiencing strange pulls and tugs at her temporary home where she is staying while taking radiation treatments for breast cancer.
From - The Hand 
I spent the night at home Sunday and made the three hour drive back to my temporary home Monday morning. I stopped by the house for a stretch to unload my overnight bag and refrigerate some leftovers that would feed me for the next week.
As I turned from the fridge, I felt something-- someone-- grab me around the wrist. It was a solid feeling that jarred my senses, as much as if I’d been electrocuted. I looked down at my wrist and a hand was wrapped around it.
A hand.
Its knuckles were white as it clasped around my wrist, as if it didn’t want to let go. I screamed and thrust myself backwards in an attempt to free myself.
Within seconds, it simply dissipated.
I’m sorry, Mrs. Chase. I just don’t see anything that indicates the cancer has metastasized.”
I stared at my doctor dumbfounded. It hadn’t escaped me that he was apologizing for my cancer not spreading. Sure it was great news… only now it meant that I had no scientific reason behind my experiences. “No brain tumor?”
He shook his head with a half smile dancing on his face. “None at all.”


You can purchase The Hand on Smashwords (several formats available), Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or search for it on your favorite site!

Friday, November 18, 2011

It's a sad reality when you have to talk to kids about sexual abuse before you have THE TALK.

In trying to figure out what to write for the day, I played with a number of topics. I could write about Thanksgiving and how disgusted I am at the retailers who want to push Black Friday into Thursday. I could write about my battle with the hubs on a real tree versus a fake tree since it's coming close to time to start thinking about putting up Christmas decor. Or I could rant about how irritated I am that presidential candidates get to have security provided by my tax dollars when there is such a huge debt problem in the United States. I could even write something writing-related because ultimately that's most of what this blog is about; my life as a writer.

But not today. I'm going to focus on something even more ruffled than any of those things above; having an important discussion with a 5-year-old.

We haven't had THE TALK. I think my son is still too little for that full blast of reality but when the questions come, it's almost impossible to avoid the subject. So far, the realm of sex talk has only extended into a dabble of discussions about babies. Earlier this year, my step-daughter was pregnant.  My son asked, "Momma, who put a baby in sissy's belly?"

When it comes to the serious stuff, dear hubs usually passes the buck to me. We were in the car at the time of this spontaneous question and I'm sure the look on both of our faces depicted the horror a squirrel must feel when a car comes barreling down on it. Since I knew his father wouldn't answer him, I had to come up with something quick. My sense of being a realist mother kicked in. I didn't want to lie to him or give him some BS line about storks or the bit that starts with "When mommies and daddies love each other..."  Instead, I kept it simple. "Marcelo put it there," I said. Then I held the handle of my car door tightly as if I were bracing for impact. My husband's eyebrows shot up and his mouth kept opening and closing in disbelief at what I'd just said.

As it turns out, simple really is better. He accepted that answer with a stout, "Okay."  Relief washed over the hubs and I. Being the I-told-you-so person that I am, I turned to the hubs and grinned.

Less than five minutes later, the next question came. "How will the baby get out of sissy's belly?"

I'm sure my face went white again and the hubs only snorted as he stifled a laugh at how smug I'd been.  So what was another simple answer? "Sissy goes to the hospital and a doctor helps the baby out."


Thankfully, he accepted those answers without digging further and I'm thankful that I was able to easily answer him with a point of reality instead of feeding him fantasy.

But while I can somewhat divert the seriousness of those types of questions for now, I knew I needed to teach him about bad people. The whole Sandusky thing going on at Penn State is horrid. There are so many stories about sexual abuse from people you would never expect and stories about abductions and such that as a parent, it has become a vital necessity to talk with your kids about it.  And what's even worse is that you have to talk to your kids about this stuff before even having THE TALK with them.

So last night, I wanted to convey safety to him without scaring him. I told him about bad adults and some of the things they would try to do to little kids without being graphic. I talked mostly about clothing and how adults should never undress in front of kids and how other adults shouldn't ask kids to undress in front of them. I also weaved a little abduction safety in there. The only questions he asked were about who he was allowed to ride home with when I told him that I would never send someone he didn't know to pick him up from anywhere.

Then we did a little Q & A after our discussion. "What do you do if someone picks you up and tries to put you in their vehicle?"

"Kick, scream, bite, scratch and get away!" he said proudly.

Having this kind of discussion with little kids is especially tough because kids are really detail oriented. I didn't want to miss a scenario they might encounter. I want them to be prepared if they ever (God forbid) encounter a situation where someone says they would kill their mommy and daddy if they tell on them. I want them to know what to do if an adult approaches them about helping them find a puppy.  I'm not going to be able to be with my kids all the time. And when my son spends the night somewhere else, whether with a family member or a friend, I'm not going to know every person that enters that home when he's there. You just never know who is and isn't capable of unspeakable behavior. And it's my job to prepare my children for those things.  It's a sad reality but it's a must.

I just hope that I'm doing it right. A parent always second guesses themselves about such important things.

I hope you've had a talk with your kid about these subjects. If you haven't, the headlines should convince you that it's time. It's terrible, I know, but these adults who prey on kids do so because many kids haven't been empowered by the knowledge of what they should do if they are in that situation. Uninformed kids are easy targets for these monsters.

It's cliche but knowledge really is power, especially for kids.

Peace, love, and child safety,


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Why I'm getting away from journalism

My love has always been writing fiction. I never saw myself also pursuing journalism. But that's what happened. For several years now, writing content and news has been my alternate career as I continue pursuing my fiction career.

First, with the ever changing landscape of content writing and online news writing, I decided to look for something closer to home. There's not much around me in the way of journalism. Second, chasing news isn't really something I'm happy doing. The writing aspect and coming up with original ideas is fine but I don't have the disposition to constantly monitor the goings-on around me. It's stressful to constantly be on the lookout for that breaking story. I'd rather focus on my own family and my fiction than to be worrying about what everyone else is doing.

And third, stories like this depress me. There are often times when I'm searching for a story to do my Yahoo! commentary on, that I just sit at my computer and cry at these terrible, heartbreaking stories. It's not that I don't want to know what's going on in the world but I wouldn't dig so deep if I didn't have to write about these stories.  A fellow writer whose young son is battling cancer said it best; "Headlines alleging child abuse and discord make my stomach turn in ways I can't describe; they bring about a sense of rage that's hard to quell. Why are babies dying at the hands of the people who are supposed to love and protect them while I'm struggling --sacrificing just about everything-- to keep mine alive?" (-From the Prayers for Logan blog)

Sometimes keeping in touch with the news is too much for my soul to bear, especially when I'm struggling in pain like I have been for the last several months, especially when my kids are sick, especially when we discover that our insurance isn't as good as we thought it was and bills are starting to pile up, especially when it looks more and more like we'll be losing our home soon.

It's a rough life and I'm sure others are struggling more than I am. But in the case of my career, I need a change. I need something to do while working on my fiction that doesn't stress me or depress me so much. So starting month after next, I'm going back to college to get an English Education degree. The prospect of picking up math classes again frightens me but I'm glad to be able to go back.

It's going to be strange taking classes with kids that are the same ages as my step children. Maybe I won't be the oldest person in my classes.

Peace, love, and happy studies,


Monday, November 7, 2011

Update: One Month Post Discectomy

Okay so I've already written the "my back hurts after surgery so I'm whining" post. I want to follow that up with some practical "what to expect after back surgery/discetomy" points.

I tried really hard last week to get on some sort of normal schedule. My back was gradually getting better but I'm still having a hard time sitting. This isn't good when your work requires you to sit. Let me explain. I realize I probably still live in the stone ages with my 3/4 year old desktop computer. I have a netbook but I don't even have it connected. I only use it to write blog posts like this one and my fiction. So when I'm writing content for money, I can only do so at the desktop computer. But sitting and writing has been a problem. Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday were okay. I wrote a few articles and did some client work. If my back or leg started to bother me, I'd get up and walk a lap or two around the house.

But Thursday, my hip and leg really started to bother me. Friday, it was all but impossible to sit for longer than ten minutes at a time. I tried different chairs, pillows, etc. but nothing was easing the pain. I finally shut it down Friday and laid down until I had to go get groceries, which turned out to be an excruciating trip. I've been practically bedridden ever since. I'm actually typing this lying on my bed.

It's been nearly a month since the surgery. I thought that by now I was supposed to start feeling better... and I was feeling better up until Thursday. Since then I've experienced such horrible pain that I've been left in tears, asking God what I'd done to Him to deserve this. I've actually been praying, too, that God would put his hand on me and heal me. If he did that one thing for me, then I'd never take my body for granted again. I just want to be able to run again. I want to be able to get back to jogging and I want to be able to play with my kids.

I hope that I start to see some improvement soon. I see the disappointment on my kids' faces when I tell them I can't do something because of my back. I am watching the dwindling of my bank account because I can't work.

Ugh. I never meant for this to be another whining post but this is what I'm going through. On the bright side, at least since I can type on this thing lying down, I can continue working on my novel rewrite.

Peace, love, and normalcy,


Monday, October 31, 2011

Boo. Oh, and NaNoWriMo is about to start.

I almost forgot that tomorrow begins the November sensation, National Novel Writing Month.  Unfortunately, this just isn't on my agenda this year.  Actually, I've never participated in NaNoWriMo and I suppose that's because I've completed a few novels and don't really see the need to push myself that way.

Even as much as I haven't participated, I can still see the importance of it.  Here's something I wrote last year about how National Novel Writing Month can benefit writers.

What NaNoWriMo Teaches Us

If you have never finished a novel, if you have always said that you wanted to write a novel but never have, then this November is for you.

For me, I'll be taking a novel I've already written, Future Past, and reworking it into something that Hadley Rille wants to publish.  I'm actually starting that rewrite today and I'm super excited. :)

Happy Halloween and happy upcoming NaNo, everyone!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Update: Post Surgery and Getting Back to Writing

I'm in a little better mindset since I wrote last Friday. I had my two week post op check-up and the surgeon said I was doing fine. I told him I still had some of the same pain and that part of my left foot was numb. According to him, that is normal. He said that I'd had a very bad rupture (and had even had a piece of my disc broken off in there) and that he'd had to move that root nerve around to get it all fixed. It was understandable that my foot was numb and I'm lucky that it was the only thing that was numb. I would eventually get the feeling back. I asked him about exercise and he said the only thing he wanted me to do was walk. He said I had a pretty big gap back there and he wanted me to continue to take it easy.  I guess I'm just paranoid that after having been in pain for so long that it might never go completely away.

I do feel like I'm starting to get better now. I still have my moments where I have to lie down but I can finally resume working. I can't sit in my computer chair for too long but at least I can do something, whether it's an article or scheduling client posts or setting up a new client blog (which is something I have to do later this week).

I have been able to sit up in the couch (with pillows situated just right) for longer than I can sit in the computer chair. I have a netbook that I use only for my creative writing so I've been catching up on some fiction this way. I finally have the rough draft of the first Barrier story ready for my test readers. Mike Underwood, the editor at Fiction Lake (another online management client of mine), hasn't had much luck finding usable stories so he's asked to take a preliminary look at Barrier. I'm a little nervous about him looking at the rough draft but he can also help me craft it into something worth selling. I'm looking forward to seeing if he'll want to use it for Fiction Lake.

And now comes the task I've been almost dreading. I have to finish reworking Future Past into something that Hadley Rille wants to publish. I'm so nervous about this that just thinking about it makes my stomach do little flops. After researching the publisher, there's no doubt that if they wanted my novel, I'd be more than happy to enter into a contract with them. It's time to roll up my sleeves and do some real work.

And on that note, let's get to it.

Peace, love, and recovery,


Friday, October 21, 2011

Post Back Surgery

It's been awhile since I've posted here or even on Facebook or Twitter. The only thing I've done online is keep my long term clients updated to when I might be able to return to work.

It's been less than two weeks since my back surgery and I must say, I wasn't at all prepared for the reality of it. I read the material, I did my own research as well, but none of it prepared me for the physical and emotional pain. A lot of people made it seem like it wasn't a big deal. This was a same-day procedure and the effects would be immediate. My brother-in-law had the same surgery, according to my sister, and he was up and about in 3 days. So does that mean I'm some sort of wimp? Or does it mean that my surgery wasn't successful? Because at this point, I'm still feeling some of the same sort of horrible pain from my spine to my hip. I'm also having some numbness in my left foot. I have trouble getting up and down; getting in and out of my bed or even sleeping in my bed is out of the question. I have to sleep belly down on the couch with pillows propping up my midsection to ease the discomfort and pain.

And then the best part of all, my husband has had to take off work to care for our children (and me half the time). I can't give them a bath, I can't tuck them into bed. And he's been doing the best he can with the house but it looks awful and there's not much I can do about it. I can't work because I can't sit in my computer chair for more than 5 minutes without hurting. I can't bend or stretch or twist. I'm just... well... here. Taking up space.

I'm emotionally exhausted and I'm tired of doing nothing. I walk around but that's about all I can do. I think what is driving me crazy the most is that I have no idea if this surgery worked or not. I was told that I'd be pain free but right now, I just can't see an end to the pain. I can completely understand now how people with constant, never ending pain contemplate suicide. I'm not there myself; just saying that I understand that mindset now.

And writing... oh my lord. This is probably the longest stretch of non-writing that I've had in over 2 years. I'm writing this post laying belly down on the couch and my arms are now aching so bad that I'm going to have to stop. So I'll sign off with apologies for my whining.

Peace, love, and prayers,


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Never thought I'd compare writing to weed eating.

I want to reveal a secret. I haven't wanted to write much lately.

I'm close to the end of the rough draft of Barrier. Although the story hasn't lost its appeal to me, I still sometimes find it a struggle to maintain my writing schedule; to utilize at least an hour after the kids are in bed to tap away at the story.

I've had quite a bit going on lately. I'm changing careers soon as I slowly phase out journalism for a degree in education. (None of which, by the way, will ever keep me away from writing fiction.) I've had back problems which I'm going in for surgery next week. I had to take my 5 year-old to the emergency room late Tuesday night and he was diagnosed with what I refer to as "walking" pneumonia. This means that they found a bit of pneumonia in one lung but it wasn't bad enough to admit him. Instead, I'm treating him at home with antibiotics and cartoons. (I've also discovered that no matter how sick one or both of my children are, they will still find a reason to pick on and/or yell at each other.) My 3 year-old has been battling a pesky cough as well so when I take my older son to follow-up with his pediatrician today, the doc will take a look at him, too.

In any case, I've been very tired lately and most nights, I've really had to force myself to write. What I find usually happens, though, is I'll reluctantly start writing and I can usually get going pretty good after a few minutes. I'll find that sweet spot, the kind of writing zone where you're really deep into your own head, watching the story play out in your mind as if you were really there.

I wanted to mention this for one reason only. I know a lot of writers struggle to find the energy to get those words down. But sometimes it's like a weed eater engine. Pulling the string to get the engine started is the hard part but once it gets started, the engine runs pretty good on its own. All you have to do is just find the will to pull that string. The rest will come out pretty easily.

Hope everyone is having a blessed week.

Peace, love, and weed eating,


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Opting for surgery.

Other than a slight discussion about the difference between a ruptured disc and a herniated disc, which is actually the same thing, the course has been laid out.  I'll be heading into surgery next Wednesday so the surgeon can cut out the portion of the disc that is pressing against the root nerve.  He assures me that it sounds worse than it actually is.  It's not like I'm having a fusion or anything terribly invasive. I will, though,  have to have some recovery time and will have to avoid sudden movements and avoid lifting but once I've recovered, I should pretty much be able to get back to my normal life.

Surgery wasn't my only choice.  I was given some options.  I could do physical therapy or do "blocks", but ultimately, there was more of a chance that I would just be wasting my time. The herniation wasn't going to magically move.  I simply just want the most definitive course of action and this seems to be it. So I'm bypassing all those things that may or may not work or help and going straight for the option that will free that root nerve.

In any case, I'm happy to have a husband that is taking off work to care for me and the kids and maybe (BIG maybe) be able to get him to pick up a vacuum cleaner and actually use it while I'm recovering. 

As an aside, one of the nurses said, "No wonder it's gotten worse!" when I told her about my long struggle trying to get a doctor to listen to me when I said it was something more serious than muscle strain.  Yeah, I'm not going to get over that anytime soon.

Please keep me in your prayers and thoughts as I go under next week.  Thank you.

Peace, love, and pain relief,


Saturday, October 1, 2011

Pain in my Backside Revealed!

I finally have a diagnosis! Not that I'm excited about the actual diagnosis, I'm just finally relieved to have an answer to something that has been plaguing me for a long time.

The MRI showed mild fluid loss and a slight tear in the disc between L4 and L5 - that's in the lower part of my spinal column. But that one, while it causes some pain, isn't the worst of it. It's the ruptured disc between L5 and S1 near the tail end of my spine that is the main pain in my arse (yes, literally). The MRI shows that it is the rupture that is pressing against what they call a root nerve on my spinal column. It's why I can't bend or stoop without being in excruciating pain.

(This isn't MY MRI but an image I found that illustrates what a herniated disc between L5 and S1 looks like.

Usually disc problems come as a natural result of aging but I'm still in my early 30's so that doesn't much apply to me. There must have been an injury some time, somehow, but I can't really pinpoint what could have caused it. I just remember having to crawl across the floor of my house when I was pregnant with my youngest (about 3 or so years ago) because the pain was so horrible I couldn't walk. I remembered thinking that I might not make it through that pregnancy because I was in so much pain.

What upsets me most about it now is that I've seen 3 doctors (including my current doctor), a chiropractor, and a nurse practitioner over the past three years and not a single one of them wanted to hear that I didn't think it was a muscle strain like they said. None of them thought I knew my own body enough to know the difference between a simple muscle strain and something more serious.

Don't get me wrong. I get it. I get that when you see people over and over, people who are carrying extra weight and they say, "My back hurts," most of the time it really is a simple muscle strain. And then doctors have to contend with those who come in with complaints of back pain who are only in there for narcotic pain medication. (Which, I want to add, I haven't taken anything like that for my pain, even though my doc has since offered it. I've been very tempted, though, especially on these painful sleepless nights, but have so far been able to resist.) But as much as I understand those things, I wonder at what point I should be pissed.

They will probably try to tell me that nothing could have prevented this from getting as bad as it has but because no one ever wants to admit liability (even though I have no intention of suing anyone over this), there will never be a time when I believe that. I've been doing a lot of reading and research since my back pain diagnosis and what I discovered was that a mild herniated disc can actually heal itself over time. But there's certain things that I shouldn't have been doing. For instance, the exercises that I've pushed myself through despite the pain because it was supposed to help me strengthen those muscles that I supposedly had strained. For instance, all the jogging and running I've done, again despite the pain, because it was supposed to be good for me. Exercising by itself isn't bad. In fact, I can and should continue my walking regimen and the elliptical in moderate doses isn't bad either. But I have to wonder how much of this pain and injury I could have avoided if I'd been properly diagnosed when I first went in with back pain complaints or how much I could have avoided if they'd actually HEARD me when I said I didn't think it was muscle strain.

I can actually be pissed all I want but none of it will do me any good now. I have to figure out what the best course of action will be. My doc has already referred me to a neurosurgeon and I will drive 2 to 3 hours Monday to go see him.

Opinions are like...

Yeah, and everyone has one, even when it comes to something like back pain. I talk to one person who knows someone who knows someone who has had multiple surgeries on their back and they are still dealing with pain, albeit a different kind of pain from what they originally went into surgery for. I talk to another person whose daughter-in-law's stepmom's aunt had surgery and has been just fine ever since. And others, when you say that you have a herniated disc, they look at you funny as if you're making a huge deal out of having just pricked your finger with a thumbtack. "Oh, well, you really DON'T want surgery for that," as if my pain is so miniscule that I can just go on pretending like nothing is wrong. And yet other times I feel like I did when talking to the doctors, like no one believed that I was in actual debilitating pain.

I'm trying to not let any of those things deter me from my own research and from any preconceived notions before I talk to the expert. Ultimately, this is a decision that I will have to make myself.  And I will make it as an informed and educated individual and not based on hearsay.

I will keep y'all updated.

Peace, love, and wellness,


Friday, September 23, 2011

Damned if you do, damned if you do.

I have a problem.  I care too much.

I guess that's what you'd call it. After a family member told me they wanted my help and I started making the effort to get the changes they wanted, they backed off and said that I should too.  They called my efforts on their behalf meddling. Helping people is really confusing.  Should be simple but it's not.

When someone tells me about a problem, I tend to want to help them fix it.  Sometimes, though, they don't want it fixed.  They just want to complain about it and do nothing about it and that's something that is hard for me to comprehend.  My way of thinking is, if you want to complain, then take the steps to fix it so you won't have a reason to complain anymore.  I don't understand why someone will complain about the same things over and over but never take the obvious steps to fix the problem.  For example, there was a woman I knew who constantly complained about how horribly her ex-husband was treating her and her child.  Then the next minute, she was allowing her child to spend extra time with the ex, outside of court recommendations.  I'd say, "Do you not remember what he did to you a few weeks ago?  What he made that child go through?"  And she'd say, "Oh, he's been good lately," as if she'd forgotten that just a few months before, he'd been "being good" then, too.  She'd cave and let him see the child for extra time and he'd start right back up with the horrible behavior.  However, me pointing that out made ME the bad person.  Things haven't quite been the same between us since.

Other times, I see someone mistreated or hear about someone being taken advantage of and it breaks my heart; whether I know them or not.  I want to step in and protect those who are unaware.  But when I say something, I tend to get a "Why should you care?" lecture.  "These people are adults and could figure it out themselves if they were smart enough."  As if that absolved me of any responsibility.  It's like saying that if people didn't want to be mistreated or taken advantage of, they wouldn't allow it to happen to them.  Isn't that like "victim blame"?

I guess it goes back to the days when I was being mistreated on a daily basis.  No one spoke up for me and I didn't know how to speak up for myself.  So when I see these things happen to others, I feel like I have to say something. 

But as much as people say that more people in the world need to help each other out, I find more often than not that it all backfires.  I start helping someone and halfway through, they back out and make me look like an idiot.  I tell someone who is complaining how to change the circumstance they are complaining about and suddenly I'm "judging" them.  I mention that I want to help people who don't know they are being taken advantage of and I am told, "Why should you care?  It doesn't affect you."  It's very depressing and doesn't bode well for my outlook on the world.

I really don't know how NOT to care.  I try not to let this deter me from... well, being ME.  I try not to let these things make me lose faith in humanity.  I try.  Sometimes, it doesn't work.

Today I've lost faith.  I'll eventually get it back and then sometime in the future, I'll go down the same road as I get burned again.  And again.  I keep trying to tell myself that if I've helped just ONE person, REALLY HELPED one person, then all these instances of feeling hopelessly defeated would be worth it.

But for today, I'm just lost.

Peace, happiness, and (eventual) faith,


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Mystery of my back pain (almost) solved.

The pain in my back started when I was pregnant with my youngest son. The stabbing feeling in the middle of my lower back was so debilitating that I literally had to crawl where I needed to go (this was in my house, of course). From then on, the pain has been intermittent. A few months ago, though, the pain started to get worse.

Also over the last few years, since my family doctor had moved away, I had seen three doctors about my back pain. Each one of them would take one look at me, assume I was out of shape, and decide that what I was experiencing was muscle strain. They would throw a prescription of muscle relaxers and anti-inflammatories at me and send me on my way. I would always give them the benefit of a doubt. They were doctors, after all, and what did I know? But the pills never worked. Granted I'm not in the best shape but in my defense, it's hard to rev up your exercise routine (and I do exercise several times a week) when your experiencing such horrid back pain.

I found out last year that my family doctor moved back and reopened his practice. So when my back started acting up again a few months ago, I went to him. What did he say? Muscle strain. He wrote me a prescription for -- you guessed it -- muscle relaxers and anti-inflammatories. He could tell I was frustrated and I told him why. I knew there was more going on than muscle strain but I couldn't convince him, or apparently anyone else, of that. He said we'd wait a year and if the pain wasn't gone, then we'd take steps to check it out further. I knew I wouldn't be able to wait another year.

That was in May. Since then, I have been in constant pain and it just keeps getting worse. I held off going to the doctor as long as I could because I was so scared that he would simply say it was muscle strain again. But there was something about this time that was different. Maybe it was the rigid way I moved. Maybe it was the look of "Please help me!" on my face. The minute I told him it was even a struggle to tuck my kids into bed at night, did he finally say what I'd been hoping for all along. "Let's get a scan and see what's going on."

It was such a relief to finally have the sort of help I've been needing. I went yesterday for an MRI and the results should be back in the next few days. I admit I'm nervous. I'm terrified that I'll have to have some kind of surgery. I'm terrified of spending the rest of my life with this debilitating back pain. Most of all, I'm terrified that I might end up in a wheelchair. I realize that's the worst case scenario, but it is on my mind.

What saddens me the most, though, is the thought of my young children helping to take care of me. I was sent to live with my grandparents at a young age specifically for the purpose of helping take care of my handicapped grandmother. It was a big burden for such a young kid. I had a flashback of this when I asked my young son to pick things up off the floor for me. I never want to place that kind of burden on them. And today, there was a commercial for something that said "Back Pain Relief". My 5 year-old got very excited and said, "Look Momma! That will help your back pain!" I gave him big hugs for wanting to help me and when he wasn't looking, I cried because it has affected them more than I thought it had.

Part of me can't help but wonder if my pain would've gotten this bad if someone had really listened to me the first time.

I'll update when I get the results in.

Until then, peace, love, and (pain free) hugs,


Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The End of my DAW Journey

Dear Mr. Stampfel,

In June of 2009, I submitted my science fiction novel, The Influence, to you for publication consideration. Just two short months later, I received word that you'd pushed my novel through the first stage. Every six months, I've sent follow-up letters and for each one, you've graciously taken time out of your schedule to respond.

It has now been two years since that first letter came to me. In that two years, I have written and published several short stories and I have written two other novels. My latest novel, a fantasy entitled Future Past, has caught the eye of another publisher and I'm in the process of doing their suggested edits in hopes that they will decide to take my work on.

I've been very patient with DAW because I love DAW Books and because I always have something going with my writing. With that being said, I feel like I've been patient long enough.

There was something that you found intriguing enough about The Influence to pass it on and it is my hope that you will give it another look. Even though I admit that I've learned quite a bit in the last two years and that The Influence could probably use another brushing, the story is unique and interesting enough to warrant further consideration.

I find that I can no longer offer you exclusive review after August 31 and will submit to other publishers. If you are interested (or whoever does the next reading), please let me know before the end of August. My contact information is at the end of this letter. If not, I feel it is time to move on. I love DAW but I love the story too much to continue to let it sit with no hint of when I might get some sort of answer.

Thank you so much for your attention. I hope to hear from you soon.


Pamela Caves
Facebook has this thing where they show "On this Day in (year)".  If you're on Facebook, you've likely see this.  On this day in 2009, my status update was:
OMG! I got a letter from DAW (imprint of Penguin USA - Major publishing house in New York) that said my novel made it through the first reading! Not exactly an acceptance but it's not a rejection! Yippee!
I remember the excitement I felt that day.  I cried happy tears.  Finally, all my hard work and persistence meant something.  DAW recognized me and it felt incredibly good.  For almost a year, I kept that letter on my refrigerator so I could read it often. 

Eventually, though, it came down and is now stuck in one of my writing files somewhere.  When DAW said they were backlogged, I expected 9 months, a year at the most.  One year went by, then a year and a half.  Then last month I really had to ask myself if I was willing to sacrifice my dignity for a chance to work with a publisher as popular as DAW.

The Influence is very important to me.  It is a story that touches on the stereotypes of the South, a story about a religion's bad points while bringing out its good points.  It's a story about a girl who loves her sister so deeply, she goes to impossible lengths to protect her, even if she doesn't feel that her sister is entirely good.  I've been working on it for almost a decade.  It is a part of me as much as my arm.  It was hard to sit for so long without any word of how or why there was such a long wait and especially hard not to have any clue when I might expect a response.

As great as DAW is, and I mean no disrespect as I write this, I felt that I was being brushed off because without an agent, it was acceptable to treat me in such a way.  I'm a patient person and I realize in this biz, things often move slow.  However, telling writers to submit with exclusivity but then make them sit and wait for over two years to find out if they even have a shot is not very courteous or fair to those they've said passed the first reading.

Today is the last day of August and I haven't received a response on the above letter. I sent it near the end of last month so there has been plenty of time.  I've received responses to my follow-ups quicker than this.  To be honest, I really didn't expect to hear anything.  In two years if they hadn't decided whether they wanted my work or not, I don't suspect that they would pull out all the stops to tell me now.

It's sad that it's over.  For two years, I've clung onto that hope that I would get a phone call, email, or letter telling me that I'd passed the second reading.  It was a fun daydream, though.

Someone asked me awhile back if it was worth it.  I told them to wait until it was all over for my answer.  Even though it didn't turn out in my favor, I'm going to say that this experience was absolutely worth it.  Strange answer, I know, but I have learned so much in the last two years that had it not been for the first letter from DAW, I might not have learned anything.  I am so thankful for that.  It has and will continue to enable me to hone my skills.

What's next for The Influence?

I'm setting it aside for now.  I'm working on the first draft of Barrier, a sci-fi short fiction series that I plan on pitching to Fiction Lake.  Then I'm doing a complete rework of Future Past, my most recent fantasy novel, for resubmission to Hadley Rille.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Writers have to deal with bullies, too.

The "Terribly" Wrong Way to Make an Impression

It's a fact that human beings are going to make mistakes.  It's also a fact that, with the current trend in online content demand, the writing and publishing needs to be fairly quick.  This does leave more room for mistakes than would normally be in printed material.  Most people know this and aren't quick to judge.  As long as a piece isn't riddled with mistakes and is readable, it is not a big deal.  In fact, I'm sure someone can find something wrong with much of what I write online because I am quick about it.  I have to be.  I wouldn't make money if I poured (that was for you, MP!) myself over my work for hours on end and I'm sure it's that way for most content writers.

The extremists (or "grammar Nazi's") bother my sense of ethics.  You know, those people who love to point out a misspelling or a comma in the wrong spot in the comment section of an article.  These are the people who blame the downfall of society on improper grammar.  Puleeeze.  It's likely the downfall of society can be attributed to people who have no tolerance for others.  These are the people who are so egotistical they have to point out the mistakes of others in an attempt to make themselves feel superior.  Isn't that what bullies do? 

And the award for most arrogant blog goes to...

A fellow writer brought to my attention a site called Terribly Write. The blog is informative and it's very obvious the chik knows what she's talking about but the entire website is classless for the very reasons I stated above.  She has taken "grammar Nazi" to a whole new level.  She insults writers and entire websites because "they deserve it".

And most of these errors are so minor that it all ends up just looking petty.  I mean, really?  Putting up a post because of an "s" instead of a "b".  Are you kidding me?  It's obvious it was a typo, which I'm sure is something she's immune to.  And that's most of what the blog is; nitpicky crap.  (And it's BS. Get it? Hardy har har.)

I've always said that if the error is an obvious one, feel free to private message me and I will edit it if I can.  I'm human.  I'm not going to catch everything.  It is completely tacky to call an error out publicly.  There's just no excuse for being an ass.  Again, that's bullying behavior.

It hurts my soul to see people be so thoughtless and even worse that she thinks it is completely okay.  But wait!  It gets worse!  Her site has it's own errors. I can spot three without even scrolling to the middle of the page.

Seeing her cruelty, it makes me wonder if she's not just a jaded writer that was long ago passed up for some gig by someone she thought she was better than.  She goes after Yahoo! a lot which is also suspect.  Who knows?  Whatever it is, you have to really have some deep issues to want to scour the internet (or Yahoo! as the case may seem) for errors, most of which are relatively minor.

I guess this bothers me not only because I'm a writer but because she could do so much more with that website then the gutter she has made it into. She's obviously knowledgeable.  It's just sad she has to use her powers for evil instead of good.

It takes so much more than good grammar to be a writer.  But good writers and editors already know that. :)

Peace and kindness toward others,


Writing is easy, right?

Writing a novel isn't as easy as just writing a novel. I'm not deliberately trying to type in some foreign code but that's often how the writing world is, a big code that we have to decipher. The writing, they say, is the easy part.

But is it really?

I started Future Past early last year. I finished the second draft a year later and I have a publisher that is interested. But this interest hinges on what will be my final draft.

I've already done a rough comb through. In doing so, I've learned how to trim the fat, so to speak. I've knocked a substantial bit of the word count off. I was worried about how the publisher would view a 73k fantasy novel and my suspicions were confirmed. It just isn't a high enough word count. While the editor did say that a story is only as long as what it takes to tell it, hearing the word "100k" told me that there is something missing in my story. I have since figured out what it was so now I just need to figure out a way to get it to work without losing the key points of the story.

So the novel that I thought was finished has barely begun. But I'm so in love with this story that there will be no giving up on it, no matter how tough it gets. My main character has been through enough already. :)

My biggest problem lies in that I'm terrified. I've been handed so many rejection slips over the last decade or so that when something good comes along, I automatically become skeptical. When I find that the good news is really good news, my hopes waver on the edge of a precipice. My heart is out there and each time the good news turns sour, my emotions plummet to the bottom. I'm not writing this to gain sympathy or for a "woe is me" kick. It's just that I'm sure there are many, many others writers who know exactly how this feels. Sometimes we just want to give up. Like a boxer who has been beaten so badly and who is so exhausted all he wants to do is forfeit... yeah, we feel that way sometimes. Yet we keep going back in to get pounded in the head some more.

I've put Future Past on hold for a few weeks while I work on the beginning of my science fiction series, Barrier. Once the first draft of that story is completed, I'm going to dig into Future Past with fresh eyes and make it work. I'm trying not to be scared. I believe I might have enough determination in me to combat the apprehension I feel.

Let's get it done.

Peace and strength of mind,


Monday, August 22, 2011

Money. Yum-Yum.

I'm money hungry. Or maybe I'm just hungry. Oh, hell, at this point, I'm too confused.

This post was prompted by Facebook post by Random House about classic authors who were librarians. I made a comment that if a book store paid enough, I'd love to work in one. This prompted another person (another writer, I presume) to scoff at people who were restricted by the confines of monetary gain; that if you love something enough, you'll do it regardless of pay. Well, here. You check out the thread.

Essentially, I'm a realist. I'm also a mom. You can't tell a mom to "scale it back". Kids are just too damn expensive.

Sure, I'm of the mindset that if you love to write, you will continue to do so regardless of how much you are getting paid. Writing is something you can do anytime, anywhere. Writing is most of what I do in volunteering my spare time. A JOB job, like working for your livelihood type of job isn't something that one can dismiss as being materialistic, especially when you have a family to feed.  I hardly think working in a bookstore qualifies as something that can be "volunteered".

I guess according to some people, I just don't have that "writer" mindset of living in rags and scraping by on pork n' beans. My art should be my entire existence and I should be wrapped inside of it in a cocoon until my wings sprout forth and set me free. 

Yeah, I'm not sure where that metaphor came from either.

I'm not going to apologize for not fitting the role of the stereotypical, getting-ready-to-stick-my-head-in-the-oven writer. As with everything else in life, I'm simply me and that's all I can be.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go dye my hair black, chop it all off, and spike it.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

I'm one of those silly, crying parents.

My son started kindergarten this week and as a first timer, I was pretty nervous. How is he going to act? Is he going to fight with the other kids as much as he fights with his brother? Will the world's pickiest eater eat lunchroom food (which is already unappealing) or will I resort to packing a ham and cheese sandwich for him every day?

The reason I am a full time writer now is because of my kids. I left business management behind to pursue my dreams. Since I was a kid, I've never wanted anything more than to be a writer. I couldn't very well tell my children to pursue their dreams when I hadn't done so myself. So now I have this incredible 5 year-old that is about to start his student career; he's about to leave me for 8 hours a day. I won't be there if another kid hurts his feelings, I won't be there if he gets a scraped knee. I won't be able to help him if he has a problem

Up until this week, I always thought it was silly for parents to cry when their little one goes off to school for the first time. Now I'm the silly parent.

I now have to place my faith in God above that He'll watch over my son. I'll be placing my faith in what I hear is a really good teacher. I have to place my faith in that I've taught my son the lessons that I've needed to teach him in order to reach his full potential in school. He's not going to be perfect; I don't expect him to be. In fact, I expect him to pull his fair share of tickets in an attempt to show everyone who's boss.

But I do know that he's a fantastic child and I couldn't have asked for a better son. He can count very well past 20 and can even count by 10's to 100. While he's good with numbers, his letters need work. And his handwriting is horrid, much like his father's. :) But this will improve with time. And he's so knowledge hungry that it often drives me crazy! Questions like, "What's in outer space?", "What's inside the brain/nose/ears/stomach?", "How do birds fly?" and a million trillion other questions sprout forth from his mouth on a daily basis. I can only hope that enthusiasm doesn't get lost along the way of institutionalized education.

His first day went just fine.  All he could say about it was that he ate break at the picnic tables.  I said, "Did you make any new friends?" 


"What are their names?"  

He said, "I don't know."  

Then as he was going to sleep (I write in the boys' room while they are falling asleep), he sat upright and said, "Momma! Mrs. Machen has two turtles in her room! Do you want to see them?" I told him he could show them to me when I took him to school Thursday.

So he likes school and I've realized that this phase of our lives is so much different then I thought it would be.  Everything has changed.  He's not my little baby who depends on me for everything anymore.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'd like to go cry in private for just a little while.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Moving Day!

Hi, Peeps!  After a couple of years blogging on Weebly's platform at my website, I've decided to start blogging on Blogger again.  I feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders with this decision.  Weebly is great but their blogging platform makes me feel like I'm in a box.  Here, people can push the little "follower" thingy to the left, I can create feeds and rolls, and add gadgets on a whim.  I've been freed!  I just wish I'd done this a long time ago.

So look for my first post here this week and thanks for walking over to my new blogging home!

Peace and house warming,