If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always had.

Thursday, September 11, 2008


School is definitely back in session. We're about three weeks in, and the kids have brought home a nasty cold. Luckily I didn't go into denial when I felt it incubating in my head yesterday. A quick stop at the store on the way home netted me two tubes of Airborne (they have a night time formula now!) and I've been maxing out the dosage for 24 hours. I've been pushing it on the kids, too, and it seems to be helping us all. I don't feel nearly as puny as I did yesterday, and I managed to cook a batch of tomatoes down into sauce today. I need to make a big batch of chicken soup to can; maybe I'll get to that this weekend.

If you haven't guessed from the title, I saw "Misery" on TV last weekend and recorded it. Man, I love that movie! Kathy Bates is so good at sweet yet creepy and I just love her version of profanity. I used 'dirty birdy' in traffic yesterday. I may have to add that movie to my wish list.


Seven years ago

Everyone in my parents' generation remembers exactly what they were doing when President Kennedy was shot. Everyone in mine, and probably my kids', will remember what they were doing on 9-11-2001.

We'd lived in Texas a couple of months and were planning a trip to San Antonio. I don't remember what all we planned to do, aside from the River Walk and the Alamo, but we were looking forward to several days of leisure. We didn't bother with alarm clocks that morning; we were going to leave when we got around to it but were shooting for noon. Then my mom called and told me to turn on the TV. The first tower was gone, and we watched in horror as the second fell.

We debated about what to do--leave now for our trip, or stay home? We really wanted to go, to escape if we could, but we didn't know then how wide-spread the attacks were and going to a city didn't seem safe. In the end, the military decided for us. They canceled all leaves and locked down the base, so the only thing left for me to do was cancel our hotel reservations and pray. We racked up a lot of long-distance calls that day.

I don't necessarily agree with what's come out of the aftermath of that day. The conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan have gone on far longer than any of us would like. While I wish it would end and we could bring our troops home, I don't see that happening anytime soon. In fact, I'll go so far as to say that we'll still have a presence of some kind over there when Alex retires from the military. Don't laugh--we're still in Germany, England, South Korea and Japan. There are no easy answers, and I don't think anyone running for any office in America this year is qualified to straighten it out.

The bottom line for me is that we fight them there, or we fight them here. They've proven they can get to us. The Patriot Act and stepped-up security won't protect us. I sent my husband into harm's way, and it will scare the b'jeebers out of me to send my son but I won't be the only mom losing sleep. I know what it is to fear the sound of a car pulling up in the driveway, to be afraid to look out and see the staff car and a chaplain. Eighteen years later my hands are trembling just thinking about it.

Desert Storm made me stronger, and in my mind 9-11 is a pivotal point between Desert Storm and whatever they're calling the conflict now. They're not separate for me, although I know 9-11 probably would have happened whether we'd gone to bat for Kuwait or not. In the years since I've learned not to think too far ahead. I've also learned to look back, to remember, to learn, to not flinch from the memory of pain and fear. I've learned that our children need first-hand accounts because the media skews the facts. I shudder to think what text books will say about 9-11 in forty years.


Monday, September 08, 2008

Catching up

Last week was a long durn week. Between the extra hours at work and Eric being out of town, I was starting to think the week was never going to end. I finally had a day off today, so I was able to get the house straightened a little, pick up some groceries, and start Holly Lisle's "How To Think Sideways" course. I need a six-month writing course like I need a hole in the head, between studying for my herbalist certification and everything else, but it's self-paced and I need to make writing a priority. I've only been through lesson one, and already I'm seeing where my thinking has kept me from pushing ahead.

On deck for tomorrow is slogging through the proposal for Rogue Pawn so I can get it mailed to a half-dozen or so potential publishers. I figured I'd get all of them who take simultaneous submissions out of the way first. Once I get a few rejections under my belt I'll be able to make improvments and try the bigger houses. I should really set myself a deadline for mailing proposals.

Right now, though, I have to get myself together and head to the airport. Eric caught an early flight home and should be en route from his lay-over any time now. Of course, I hear thunder. I just love driving in traffic across the Mississippi in the rain. Wish me luck.