A local writing group I belong to does a thing called Jano. It's based on National Novel Writing Month, but we do it in January. Get it? Anyway, the idea came to pass because one of our members thought November was just too busy. And January has 31 days. It's small peas compared to Nano, but it is a very supportive and motivated bunch. It's not too late to join. Check it out here.
I'm attempting AGAIN to finish Coming Home, my second book. I don't know why I keep trying to finish it. Well, never mind, I do know why. It's about a woman who comes back home to bury her mother after she dies in a nursing home. I had to place my mother in a nursing home. It was the most agonizing decision of my life. And for the two years she lived there, I hated myself. I questioned if I could have done more for her. Every time she would ask me to take her home. And every time, I left with tears in my eyes because I couldn't. I felt like that boat - adrift and lonely.
My mother died eight years ago and I still feel the pain of my decision. If I don't finish this story, I may never find peace. Here is an excerpt drawn directly from my experience. Maybe you will see why I have to finish this.
As they made their way down the hallway, the woman tried drawing Jennifer into small talk. It fell mainly on deaf ears as Jennifer took in the all too familiar surroundings. She realized this would be the last time she would see the picture of Jesus with the art light illuminating him from above as if he just descended from his heavenly throne. Or, the fish tank with all the colorful inhabitants immune to the sickness and distress around them, the filter bubbling fresh air into their environment. A "Footsteps in The Sand” poem in a gilded frame hung above the fake mahogany table with a silk flower arrangement, the wheelchairs barely missing it as they paraded down the hall three times a day on their way to the dining room.
Then there were the sounds, the crying and the moaning. The calls for help that the staff learned to tune out but Jennifer never did. The flushing of toilets and the loud radio and television sets all tuned to different stations creating a kaleidoscope of noise. The smell of defeat permeated the air creeping into every fiber of her body.