Sunday, January 10, 2016

In Which the Writer Combats the Winter Blues

Ten days into the New Year, and the euphoria and delight at having survived (possibly even thrived in) the past year is wearing off.  I keep seeing these lists on social media where one is supposed to check off the things one has done.  Some of them are things I'd not want to do.  Most of the things I consider personal accomplishments are not even on the I started thinking about things I have accomplished in my life (not just last year), for which (if I were still a christian) I'd be going to hell for the sin of pride.

Most basically, I have survived for sixty-six and a half years.  Considering some of the choices I made in my youth, this is not only an accomplishment, it's a source of wonder.

I have given birth to four decent human beings and raised three of them.  Many of you know that I had a child at 19 and put him up for adoption because I just couldn't see how I could do a reasonable job of raising him.  He got in touch with me after he was grown, I've met him, and we are friends on social media.  He is everything I hoped he would be, and that he would most likely not have been, had he been stuck with 19-year-old me for a mother, and no dad.  He was born via the usual hospital birth at that time, which was something of a nightmare.  My next two were born at home with midwives in attendance, but with no drugs or other assistance.  The last was an emergency c-section.  So I have experienced the miracle of birth in all three of the most common ways.  I became something of a birth junkie, and stood in as coach for several labouring women over the years.  There is nothing like being present at the birth of a brand new human being.  Nothing.

I have traveled a bit.  Not as much as I would like, but, given my circumstances, more than I ever thought I would.

I have married the love of my life, and, even though it only lasted seven years and ended with his suicide, I'd do it again in a heartbeat.  Loving someone as I loved him was a joy, and that he loved me too was beyond my dreams.

I have found work that I enjoy, connected to and derived from the hobby that I love.  Theatre is a wonderful thing.  I have acted three of my "bucket roles," Martha in Arsenic and Old Lace, Nanny in The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds, and Maude in Harold and Maude.  I have also directed shows, including one (Waiting for Godot) in which I was able to get outside the box in a way that I have never heard of anyone else doing.  Thank you, Sam Bass Community Theatre!  I have a costuming "bucket list" as well, and have done one of its shows...The Rocky Horror Show, for which I thank Austin Theatre Project, as well as Austin Entertainment Weekly, whose voters named it the best costumed in Austin last season.

I have overcome many fears...well, to be honest, some of them just went away by themselves and some were subsumed in greater terrors...but some I worked successfully at vanquishing.  Driving, for one.  Give me a full tank of gas and enough money to keep it so, and I'll drive anywhere there are roads; however, I still remember when I was too terrified to get on the freeway.

I learned how to make and keep friends.  This is no small skill.

I have survived grief and pain and become a person whose face in the mirror doesn't disgust me the way it did when I was young.  I really don't know if this is anything I actually did, or if it's just a side effect of getting old, but I'll take it, either way.  I keep it that way be being honest and standing up for what I believe, and by trying to avoid hurting people and animals.

So.  Now that I've cheered myself up considerably, I'll let you get back to what you were doing.

Oh--and many thanks to all of you who read this; those who found me in a search for something on a whim, and those who have stuck with this blog for the ten years (TEN YEARS!) I've been writing it.

Slainte mhath, y'all!


  1. Happy new year Ronni. I know it's a bit late to be saying it but we make our own rules now that we're 60 something.

    1. And to you and yours, Nelly! I've been making my own rules since before I turned 60...I think. It's hard to remember that far back...

  2. Happy New Year Veronica, My Grandkids are amazed that I can still visit online with a friend I have not seen in 50 years. Sounds like you have had life to be proud of. Keep on enjoying. Virginia

    1. Still working on it, Virginia! I was hoping to come up for the reunion this summer, but may not be able to, as I have been offered a paying costuming gig in that time slot. It still depends whether I actually have to be there, or if I can just design the show.

  3. It's been ages since I heard from you. It's funny how a little age will sort things out nicely. I'm glad that you have found your happiness. It's not often that one does what one is happy doing. I'm happy that my sons have grown up with no major problems and with some success and are secure in their jobs and their lives. I'm still working at age 74, but I'll prolly be training or mentoring my replacement soon, because the medical bastids are itching to nibble away at my toes and mangled leg.... Captain Joe

    1. Somehow, I can't see you sitting on the porch much...I'm sure that, even if you must retire from your present career, something else will come up that will require your attention. It's good to hear from you, Joe...