When I talked to members of Mid-Atlantic chapter of SCBWI on Wednesday about blogging, I weighed in on the need to have a blog be personal, but not too personal. People want to read about the writer or illustrator or blogger as a real person. Someone who worries about her plants or lets his hamster scamper on his drawing. Those little views into your world are gold, without exploiting your privacy or your family’s privacy.
And today I’m breaking with that entirely, because I’ve known you all for a while and because I feel the need to share and because what’s going on in my personal life may affect my blogging presence and because maybe I’ll get some advice that will help me with this step.
This week my mother had a small stroke. Small in that she is completely in control of her physical self and her thoughts and mostly in control of her speech. In fact, in talking to her over the phone (my brother is there with her), I had a more optimistic picture of her than was probably accurate. She is talking well, with occasional struggles to get out the right word. What I didn’t realize until yesterday is that she can’t read or write at all, because she can’t make that translation back to her brain. She also mentioned that she went to brush her teeth, and couldn’t figure out the toothpaste. She knew what to do, but couldn’t signal her hands to comply. She’s laughing about it and staying upbeat, which is good. She’s also on track for a therapy program to help her build new pathways in her brain to replace the broken ones.
But this is more serious than I originally thought, and I’m going to be making some back-and-forth trips to Virginia Beach to help out. We may also be making some hard decisions about where she is going to stay maybe even about where she is going to live. They will be particularly difficult given the economy and the housing market and the connections that we have with two cities, two families, two hundred miles apart.
So I’m not sure what I’ll be doing here online. Things may not change much, as I may have just as much free time to dash off a post here and there. I still plan on going to BEA and the Book Blogger Convention at the end of May. I hope to see some of you there. I still plan on doing the 48 Hour Book Challenge over the June 4th weekend. I have any number of kid, scouts, and family obligations that I plan to meet. But things could be different for a while.
Personally, I’m feeling mostly... okay. I have a kind of peaceful sense that we will all just do what we need to do as we figure out what that is. I guess I didn’t really need to say anything here, but I wanted to tell you because it felt like I was holding back something otherwise. In a way, it comes back to the presentation that I gave at the SCBWI session. I talked about not looking at your blog as something you need to do for promotional purposes, but seeing it as an opportunity to share of yourself, and in doing so building relationships and connecting with people. So here I am, sharing, and I’m glad to have you there to listen. Thanks.