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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Writing Past Life

This wasn't what I'd planned for today's blog, but I made the mistake of visiting Jay Lake's blog this morning. (I haven't read his steam punk series yet, but I highly recommend the Green series or any of his short stories.)

Jay talked about writing a new story while dealing with the fact that his cancer is back with a vengence. He finished his last round of chemo in April. He starts the next one this Friday. But he's determined not to let the disease take over all of his life.

I had a similar conversation with DH eighteen years ago. I was in my first semester of law school, I had moved in with him, and we were in the middle of planning our wedding when he was diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer. I dropped out of school for a year to deal with the trips to the oncologist, etc. My salary would cover the mortgage and household bills while his disability went toward medical costs.

We debated about getting married by the justice of the peace before he started chemo so I could make sure his wishes were followed if things went south, but he really wanted a church wedding. We talked about waiting until after the chemo and the second surgery, but at this point, there was no guarantee he would recover.

Then DH looked me in the eye and said, "This wedding is the one thing we can control right now. Let's stick to the original date."

Looking back, I can't imagine writing fiction through that year of hell, and I wasn't even the one who was sick.

The little interruptions I can deal with. Like the infamous interior home improvement project we were half-way through when Hurricane Ike struck Houston and Galveston. After the four years of fighting with the insurance company, lining up contractors and fighting with contractors, the exterior work was completed in May.

DH decided to take the weeks of the 10th and 17th off to paint and refloor the family room. I teasingly pointed out those were the same weeks he'd planned off in 2008. DH said, "Shut up! You're going to jinx us!"

Needless to say, we've been working out butts off on the room, and I've only written 3K in the last ten days.

But eventually, the time will come when a real problem, such as my health issues, i.e. the shut down of my endocrine system, will affect my writing. I hope I can face it with the grace that Jay and DH have shown.

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