Thursday, April 27, 2006

Rose petals...

Wow...I never even *dreamed* of an experience like this for myself. Pink rose petals on the floor, candles all over the room, thoughtful gifts, and the most romantic and eloquent words I've ever heard. It's beyond description. Joe not only makes me smile, he makes me beam.

During the difficult two years of caring for my parents (and now the dog), I must admit that I had some 'Why me?' moments, wondering where my 'reward' was -- the whole 'the good you put out into the world will come back to you' thing. Where was mine? I care for my family 150%, and all I got was broken promises, dangles from editors, friends who disappeared when the going got rough for me, really crappy people doing some really crappy things, one difficult day after another -- and where was my 'good coming back to me?' I know, it sounds whiny and tunnel-visioned but that's how I felt at the time. Like I had been left out of my own good karma. And now...with the gift of this experience and the comfort and joy of knowing Joe, maybe some of that good karma just came back to me. I am in awe...

Maya Angelou has said "Only equals can be friends."

Getting my feet back on the ground here for a little bit, I'm in the finishing stages of turning my backyard deck into something of an oasis. New patio furniture, lots of green plants in terra cotta planters, an herb garden, wind chimes, citronella candles. I picked up some hostas, parsley, basil, cilantro and ferns for my planters and will get that together as soon as the frost clears and I can get the big bags of potting soil out of my trunk. I love it out there and will have my coffee out on the deck in just a few minutes. Which reminds me of a funny story. If you've ever seen the movie "Love, Actually," you might remember a scene where Colin Firth is typing out his novel by a lake. He picks up his coffee cup and hundreds of pages fly into the air. Friends have asked me, 'What would you do if that ever happened to one of your manuscripts?' My response, 'I'd jump off of something.' (Okay, so I'd never type on a manual typewriter in front of a lake, but still... ) WELL...I was editing my friend Lindsay's novel manuscript out on the deck and along came a big wind. So I chased the pages all over the yard, thankful not to live on a waterfront, and I'm sure I was quite a sight in my purple pajamas and purple fuzzy socks. I may be a good businesswoman, but I also have *these* kinds of moments.

Tomorrow is the ASJA writer's conference, and I will be meeting with some of my editors, plus five or six new editors from Entrepreneur, Modern Bride, and Garden Design. Plus I finally get to meet in-person Laurie Sue Brockway who is an author and wedding officiant, one of my favorite people. The writer's conference is a highlight of my work year -- I remember going to this same conference as a college freshman and wishing I could be a member of ASJA, sitting in the back of the room, almost falling over when I met Lisa Collier Cool, who wrote "How to Write Irresistible Query Letters," the first writing how-to book I ever read. (Lisa is now a close colleague of mine). I remember my parents picking me up afterward, and my saying "That is the best thing that I have EVER done." I found my path early.

A quick thank you to everyone who donated to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society's Mother's Day Tea Party. We're over $1,000 so far and I haven't heard from half of my people yet. I'm just over the moon.