You Say It’s Your Birthday?

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No, YOUR child’s birthday is exactly eleven days away and you have made exactly ZERO plans to celebrate it.
 
This isn’t a call for help with ideas on how to celebrate. Captain Sassypants has had a new idea every week since before Christmas on how she’d like to celebrate, which may in fact be why we have no confirmed plans at this late stage. I’m not sure what’s gone wrong this year, because in previous years, I’ve had this birthday party thing totally wrapped up at this point. I’ve been a master-planner in the celebration department for the six years we’ve celebrated her birthdays, and each one has been a blast, if I do say so myself. Maybe that’s the problem. Perhaps I’m suffering some sort of party-fatigue brought on by my own obsessive need to outdo myself every year to give her a dreamy party she’ll never forget. Only to find out that by the time her next birthday rolls around, it’s me who is reminding her what she did last year and all the other years too. I know she’s just a normal kid, but it broke my heart that I had to remind her how three years ago, we took her to Disney for five days and did the whole “Bippity Boppity Boutique” experience and dinner with Cinderella on her birthday. I mean seriously – don’t the price tags of these things guarantee indelible inscription in their little memory banks?
So this year I’ve sort of given up. We’ve discussed so many different options; originally we were going to do New York City for her birthday weekend, but that fell through for a few reasons. Then we discussed a movie party to see the long-awaited live-action version of “Jungle Book” coming out, but I hate having to wait until the week before to confirm the exact show time. Yeah, I know. There was a brief excitement over laser tag, until we found out that the kids need to be a certain height and weight to comfortably carry the backpacks required. This eliminated about half of her friends who somehow don’t seem to be growing quite as quickly as she is. Each idea had some negative aspect or two that cause their elimination, until now we really aren’t considering very many options and I’m feeling like a play date party at our house just pales compared to the rainbow of bashes we’ve thrown for the past six years. Don’t worry, I’m getting over myself as you read this.
I’m trying new approaches to life this year, and *winging it* has never really been something I’ve embraced in adulthood, so I could simply say that’s what I’m doing now and sound very goal-oriented, right? Except I’d be lying. I’ve simply lost my ambition to create “memorable” kids’ parties that cost a fortune and end up making me painfully aware of how we spoil our kids. We stopped doing birthday parties for my stepson when he was ten and offered instead “experiences” like horseback riding. I tried this approach with Baby Girl this year, despite her only turning eight, and initially she liked the idea, but being the social butterfly that she is, quickly cast suggested experiences aside for group activities with her friends.
Part of me is really ok with my lack of motivation regarding this important milestone, but there is a sliver of hope because I do recognize something needs to be done really soon or I’ll risk utter disappointment from the star of my life. I’d call it a mom-fail, if I believed in such terminology. Instead, I’m going to classify it as a “Mom-exercising-last-minute-creativity-challenge” and get my ass in gear. Tomorrow. Possibly.
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40 Thoughts on Celebrating 40 Years Without Cancer

Today, I celebrate my fortieth birthday.

Well, “re-birth day” is probably a more accurate description.

On June 10, 1975, I fell from a swing in my backyard. I was four years old.

The impact when I hit the ground caused an undiagnosed cancerous tumour growing in my left kidney to burst. I still remember the pain and having to run into my house doubled over from it, trying not to cry out because I didn’t want to disturb my sunbathing neighbour who had fallen asleep on her lounge chair.

The E/R doctors told my parents I had probably ruptured my spleen from the fall.

Boy, were they wrong.

When they operated on me, they found a kidney destroyed by cancer cells, and had to remove it immediately. I had been bleeding internally so much that I needed 24 bags of other people’s blood to replace what I had lost. (Thank-you, blood donors.)

“You have a very sick little girl. She will be lucky if she makes it,” was the first thing the doctor told my parents after they had waited three hours wondering why a ruptured spleen was taking so long to fix.

I guess I was lucky, because I did make it. I thrived. I’ve lived a full life which in my mind, is hopefully not even close to being over yet. I’ve got WAY too much living left to do still. I look at this date in my history as my second chance at life. Oh sure, I was too young then to appreciate it. I was too bitter and resentful wondering “Why me?” when I had to undergo the subsequent radiation treatments and chemotherapy to ensure the elimination of any cancer cells that strayed when the tumour erupted. I didn’t understand why I had to endure more pain and another surgery a few months later when scar tissue adhesions caused a bowel obstruction. I didn’t understand why all my hair fell out on my pillow overnight, or why the kids at school teased me for wearing a wig and tried to play keep-away with it one day. I’ve hated losing my fertility and healthy immune system all these years later, and often have felt so resentful for all of the permanent effects of that one day.

I’m not sure I understand it all even now, but I’ve come to accept that the “whys” of life sometimes have no answers and often don’t matter. The events of June 10, 1975 had a profound effect on my body and my character and it has shaped me in more ways than I probably even recognize.

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I’ve learned a few things along this crazy forty-year roller coaster.

At the risk of sounding like I’m auditioning for the role of meme-creator, here are some of the more significant ones:

  1. Life is an amazing journey – sometimes it’s amazingly awesome, and other times it’s amazingly shitty, but those shitty times help me to truly appreciate the rest of it.
  2. I don’t have to be a superstar to matter. I used to worry that because I have survived so many trying times in life, I should really be doing something “spectacular” with myself. It’s only recently that I realized I am doing just that – I’m a great mother and stepmom, a good wife, a decent writer, a supportive friend and I love being all of those things. That. Is. Spectacular. Enough.
  3. My body is not something I need to use to impress anyone. I am still working hard to accept the parts of my body that I don’t love, but I’m much better at that acceptance now than I was twenty years ago. Anyone who has a problem with my body can kindly note the sprig of mistletoe hanging over the bootylicious junk in my trunk.
  4. Dying is not the worst thing that can happen to me. I’ve already lived through some stuff that I think might be worse than dying. I don’t want to die, but there is nothing I can do to stop it when the time comes, and I have no control over when that time may be, so worrying about it seems like a gigantic waste of time.
  5. Marriage is hard work. Motherhood is hard work. Friendship is hard work. Life in general is hard work, but DAMN, aren’t the rewards pretty fucking incredible?
  6. When somebody upsets or hurts me, telling them my feelings using “I feel…” statements is my best option to having my feelings actually heard and considered without the other person feeling defensive.
  7. Eating healthy and exercising are important. I suck at both of these, but I’d rather die ten years earlier with my mouth smilingly full of chips and cookies than eat kale and run marathons while wishing I was sitting with a plate of pasta in front of me. I don’t want to rush death because I have so much to stick around for, but balance is really about enjoying what I enjoy without guilt and respecting those I would leave behind if I wasn’t here.
  8. It’s ok to be selfish sometimes. Loving myself and making my own wants or needs a priority isn’t really that selfish. As I get older, the things I think I “have” to do or “should” do are becoming less and less, and that’s ok.
  9. I have what some would call “regrets” but I don’t dwell on them because I’ve yet to encounter a hot tub time machine.
  10. I don’t think forgiving someone means you have to allow them to continue doing whatever you are forgiving them for. Sometimes forgiveness means cutting people out of your life so that your hurt can heal and you can forgive and forget – about them.
  11. There is absolutely NO better sound on this earth than the belly laugh of my daughter. Nothing.
  12. Opinions are not attacks on character. Everyone has them. Sometimes they will be the same as mine, sometimes they won’t, but ones that are different than mine are learning opportunities.
  13. TV is overrated. Reading is underrated.
  14. If my kids get straight A’s, win awards, scholarships, sports trophies, etc. but are total assholes, I have failed at my work. I refuse to fail at that work.
  15. Sometimes natural consequences have a much bigger impact than me shouting or grounding or giving a speech.
  16. I live for the moments when my daughter’s arms curl around my neck and she kisses me and tells me she loves me without me having to chase her or beg her for it.
  17. Some people don’t like me. Sometimes that bothers me. Sometimes I truly don’t give a rat’s ass. Either way, *I* like me and that’s what matters most.
  18. I’ve screwed up some of this parenting business, and I will screw up some more, but I’m still a damned good mother and my kids will be just fine.
  19. Every day has good moments, even if it’s a really bad day.
  20. Every day gives me something, even if it’s just ONE thing, to be grateful for.
  21. I’ve learned to accept that perfection is knowing that something can still be mind-blowing and be imperfect simultaneously. Good enough is still good.
  22. I have been many things in my life and many people have different opinions of me, but I’m not boring. Gossip will never go away, and “You’re welcome!” to those I’ve given something to talk about.
  23. Change is the only way to keep moving forward in life and learning. There is always room for improvement, but not at the cost of dissatisfaction with yourself.
  24. No matter how bad things are, they could always be worse.
  25. My mom was right – I do understand now that I’M a mom.
  26. Nothing feels quite like someone you love caressing the side of your cheek with the palm of his or her hand.
  27. “Don’t sweat the small stuff” isn’t just the title of a book – it’s a recipe for life sanity. I’m not always good at this, but as I get older, I’m realizing how integral this advice is to my mental and physical health.
  28. If you don’t see my worth, that’s YOUR problem, not mine. I have given up trying to prove myself to anyone.
  29. There are all different levels of friendships, and that’s ok. Some friends are for life, some are not. Some have your back when life is kicking your ass, some don’t know what to do or say. I am trying my best to appreciate what each type of friend gives me and give back to them what I can.
  30. Sex is important. It’s not just to pump my ego, like I thought it was 25 years ago. It’s a physical release, but also an emotional connection.
  31. Actions do speak louder than words. I’m learning to listen better.
  32. People rarely change simply because *I* want them to. Change is truly self-motivated, but if you market it properly, some people are much more open to motivating themselves.
  33. Cancer sucks. I lived many years fearing that I would get it again, but now I just worry that all that negative energy will make me sick, so I try to not think about it.
  34. Laughing together with people I care about is my favorite soul food.
  35. I don’t have to stop loving someone simply because I don’t like some of their actions.
  36. Hate is not only a strong word, but a heavy burden to carry. Anger passes, but hate takes up too much time and energy and is rarely worth it.
  37. Animals are an integral part of my family and always will be.
  38. Love is love. There are no different kinds reserved for the “best” skin colour, sexual orientation, religion or gender. All humans are equal in every way. I am sad that this is not yet a universal truth, but I refuse to give up hope that one day it will be.
  39. Family isn’t only about genetics. I love mine. My parents are incredible people who always have my back, no matter what.
  40. Cancer fighters and survivors are amazing people. I was a kid and had no idea what I was dealing with, which makes it so much easier than what those who are fully aware of their situation must deal with. I survived through pure luck, but so many others survive by fighting with everything they’ve got. I bow down to them.

25 Reasons Why I’m Not Hip, and Probably Never Will Be

Baby Girl came home from school last week singing “It’s hip to be a square”, which on one hand, made me laugh because it’s a terrible old song that somebody was witty enough to turn into a shape-teaching tool, yet on the other hand, made me think about how un-hip I am. In so many ways.

Let me run down a few of them for you:
1. I don’t eat quinoa. I may try it one day, but probably long after it’s not hip anymore.

2. I use the “kids in a sandbox” approach to making adult friends – I actually invite people to have coffee if I think they’re cool, or I may even invite them to my house or out for lunch. Sometimes I even do this after only meeting someone once, briefly. Aloof is not my area of expertise.

3. I worry that people are mad at me or don’t like me for some reason (yes, even people I’ve never met) if they don’t reply to my tweets. I want people to like me and feel bothered if they don’t. But only if I like them, of course.

4. I don’t watch SOA, Downton Abbey, Mad Men, Orange is the New Black, or any other TV (with the exception of the quality programming found on ABC’s Revenge, The Weather Network, CBC news or CP24). In related news – we don’t even have Netflix.

5. I’m not on Pinterest, Instagram, StumbleUpon, Tumblr, Vine, LinkedIn or any other social media than Facebook and Twitter.

6. I wear Crocs in my house. All the time, as slippers. Sometimes even when people come over.

7. I like typing on a laptop more than a tablet or smart phone. I like buttons more than a flat screen image of a keyboard. I actually miss my old Blackberry.

8. I like ending conversations of any sort (yes, even on social media) with some traditional form of pleasantry like “Bye!” or “Talk to you later!” or “Have a great day!” instead of just leaving a discussion dangling in the wind with no closure.

9. I double space after periods. That’s how I was taught to type back in 1984, so I will not apologize for learning it well.

10. I don’t find humour in people getting the shit scared out of them, or people getting the beats (not the Dr Dre kind) or imitations of people with physical or mental challenges.

11. I don’t do any sports that I can talk about on social media. I don’t do any sports that I can talk about anywhere. Ok, I don’t do any sports.

12. I wear my pyjamas under my yoga pants to drive Baby Girl to school. And pick her up.  I remove the yoga pants for the hours in-between.

13. Kale revolts me. And yes, I’ve tried kale chips.

14. I have 3 cats. I adore them and I’m not ashamed to admit that. I post pictures of them online, and convince myself that I am not a crazy cat lady because I draw the line at owning clothes with animal pics on them, or having little animal chachkies around my home.

15. I am verbose. Why say it in one sentence, when you can use five or six? I joined Twitter to practise limiting my words to 140 characters. #EpicFail.

16. I follow people back on Twitter if they follow me and they’re not trying to sell me more followers, don’t have a profile that’s in a language I don’t read or speak, don’t have an egghead profile picture with 1 tweet and 254,592 followers or don’t give me the heebeegeebees for some reason.

17. I respond to almost all of the comments on my blogs – good or bad, almost all tweets to me that aren’t weird or rude or trying to sell me stuff, and all emails that aren’t from spambots or marketing firms trying to buy ad space on my blog.

18. I feel awkward talking about my experiences with depression, so I don’t. I don’t judge those that do – in fact I may have a bit of envy that they are comfortable sharing, but I’m not. I’m not ashamed, I just can’t do it. Yet, at least.

19. I put myself “out” there. I comment on blogs of people I don’t know, I tweet to strangers.

20. I still get zits.  I still refer to them as zits.

21. I didn’t dig the Kendrick Lamar/Imagine Dragons mash-up at the Grammys. I’d never heard of half of the nominees at the Grammys.

22. I constantly worry about my phone battery dying because I don’t own one of those little portable battery charger packs.

23. I get manicures biweekly, but my eyebrows resemble Frida Kahlo’s. I cut and colour my hair 3 times per year, and I’m fastidious about my pits, but I declare a moratorium on leg-shaving between November and April to avoid wearing long-johns. Don’t even ask about the equator zone, unless I will be sporting a swimsuit the next day. Basically, I’m a confused sasquatch.

24. I don’t dig zombies.

25. I’m not fake. I’m a sincere, loyal and sometimes overly-friendly person. Most of the time I’m pretty content being just who I am – hip, or not.

Bonus Addendum: I can’t believe I forgot about this in the original post, but that’s just another testament to how unhip I really am: I don’t play Candy Crush.

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Snow Shoot

I am not a winter person.  I’m not much of a summer person either.  I prefer the temperate weather of spring – yes, even with the rain – and fall (my favorite, but don’t tell the others).

Who would like a season that can do THIS?

Who would like a season that can do THIS?


I’m actually feeling a little uncomfortable even typing those words because I have always made it a bit of a personal rule to not discuss The Weather, in verbal discussions or on social media.  Oh sure – I’ve made comments here and there, when necessary, or as it pertains to a weather-related subject, but I have always felt that there is no point in discussing the weather. It is not going to change. I was born in Canada and have lived here all of my life, and not once in those 43 years has it not snowed or not been cold in the winter.  Not once has it not rained in the spring.  Not once have we had a humidity-free summer.  Never have I witnessed the leaves on the trees remaining green as fall slides into winter.  So, I’ve just never seen the point in conversing about something that I nor anyone else cannot change. Weather is what it is and nothing will stop it, so I prefer to simply put my head down and deal with it accordingly, similar to life’s other little irritations that I can’t control – needing gas in my car when I’ve used up what’s in the tank, having to wash my hair because I just don’t have the face for a Sinead-do, having to buy groceries via the brutal process of in the cart, out of the cart, in the bags, back in the cart, in the car, out of the car, in the house, out of the bags, and finally into their storage destinations.  Life is full of mundane tasks and circumstances and whining about them discussing them does not make them go away or improve in any way.

Yet, here I am, on the cusp of breaking my own rule.

I am hating this winter.

There – I’ve said it.  Trite, cliché, predictable, boring – I agree.

Yet I must speak on it, not because I have some uncontrollable urge to discuss the weather itself. In fact, I really don’t have much to comment on aside from my astonishment over how little I care about my appearance as the temperatures drop and my age climbs.  I have not a thing to say about current weather conditions.

Except that it’s creating a situation that is making me crazy: the daily laundering of the snow suit.

I am the one who generally hushes Huzbo when he gets wound up about dirt or food on the clothes.  I don’t enjoy hand-made messes, but I don’t want my anal-retentiveness to ever impede my kids’  fun or their necessary sensory development.

Yet, I still can’t seem to come to grips with why my child feels it necessary to slide around daily on the salt-covered ground on her belly.

Why?

I see the other kids coming out of the school each afternoon.  Their snow suits are not resemblant of a glazed donut!  I’ve driven by her school at lunch time and most of the other kids manage to stay standing while they partake in their fun and games.  Mine?  She arrives home daily with a lovely grit of dried dirt and salt covering her entire snow suit, front and back, with a side of sopping wet mittens that dry already starched if left on the vent.  So filthy is her outerwear that I’ve had to put it in the washer every day, leaving me to wonder if the garments will actually make it through the winter.

Why won't she just sit there and eat the snow like she used to?

Why won’t she just sit there and eat the snow like she used to?

It’s gotten to the point where I’m actually GLAD when we have Deep Freeze Days.  Minus twenty wind chill means indoor play only at our school, which in turn equates to an afternoon free of snow suit laundry for me.

So Mother Nature, if you don’t mind, I’d prefer you simply take your leave, but if you’re going to be here – make it cold and make it count.

I’ve had enough.
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A Different Breed of Good

“I’m a bad mom.” 

“Wearing my “Mom-of-the-Year” sash and tiara.” 

“Rotten Mom Club President.”

Just a few of the sarcastic-but-not-really comments I’ve seen recently on social media and blog posts.

Every time I read these comments, my inner voice screams inside my head:

MOMS!  STOP THAT RIGHT NOW!
(If you’ve written any of these or something similar recently – don’t worry – this post isn’t about YOU specifically.)

I know the feelings behind those words, trust me, I really do.  The guilt about some parenting mistake that you’ve made.  I’ve been there.  Repeatedly.  I’m no mothering expert or pro.

But in addition to the numerous resolutions I quasi-made for 2014, I am really trying to give up on mom-guilt.

Do you know why?

It accomplishes nothing except making us feel like shit about ourselves.  How does that do anyone any good?

So what, if you don’t make all those stupid designer lunches for your kids – most kids just throw out their food half-eaten or bring it home uneaten anyway.

So what, if you did the happy-skippy dance when your kids walked out the door on the first day back to school after the holidays – you and I and about a million other moms did too.

There seems to be a growing trend of mothers expressing their mistakes publicly – which is awesome.  Let’s be honest with one another – we all screw up.  Every single one of us.  Hearing about other moms’ mistakes makes us feel normal and supported – we are a mom-munity.

But how does it help other moms to feel like part of the community if we talk about our screw-ups in such a negative way?

I’m not suggesting we brag about what we’ve done or pat ourselves on the back. “Woo-hoo!  I lost my shit on little Johnny last night because I have PMS, so I sent him to his room with no dinner – isn’t that cool?” isn’t going to make other moms feel that sympathetic or connected to you.  But sending out the subtle message that you are a bad mom if you make a mistake or if you enjoy time without your kids or if you get mad at your kids sometimes (a lot) for annoying the bejeezus out of you or any of the million other things that moms feel guilty about – that’s not cool either. Just tell it like it is – you made a mistake, you maybe feel guilty about it (or you feel guilty because you don’t feel guilty), but in the grand scheme of things, you’re still a great mom and this isn’t going to turn your kid into a disaster in the humanity department.

All of your guilt and shame and screw ups and oopsies – they are NORMAL.  Do you really want your kid having documented evidence of reasons to hate you or rebel against you or blame you for needing therapy when they get older?  Nuh uh.  Documenting your very normal HUMAN behavior under the label of “wrong” or “bad” is simply putting the idea into their heads, other mom’s heads and even YOUR head that you’re not good at what you’re doing.

And that’s bullshit.

Unless you are abusive or neglectful or doing other stuff that might require help or improvement – you are all good moms.

We are a different breed of good.  And that’s ok.  We don’t need to be perfect, or even perfect-in-training.

Personally?  I’d rather be the mom I am and demonstrate to my kids that I’m imperfect, flawed and I make mistakes, but I keep getting up every morning and trying again the next day.  I keep trying to learn from my mistakes and trying desperately not to repeat them.  I apologize to them when I think I should.  I’m human.

I don’t want my kids to grow up thinking they need to be perfect.  I’m not perfect.  Nobody is.  They don’t need to be, either.  And they definitely don’t need a perfect mom.

Imperfection is the new black, so stop beating yourselves up, moms.  Be kinder, gentler, easier on yourselves.

I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating:

Good enough is still good.

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The Spirit of Christmas Past

Christmas is over.

I can’t say I’m sad about it, either.

For a number of reasons, I really didn’t have much self-created Christmas spirit this year.

It’s been bugging me since early December, but I’m trying to let it go.

As part of that, I’m sharing the most touching, good moments so far over the Christmas break:

1.  I totally scored with every single gift I bought my stepson.  This is a record.  He is not picky, but he has everything, and each year becomes harder and harder to buy for him.  This year I really had to rack my poor, tired brain to think of creative, fun, useful, educational gift ideas, but he LOVED every single one of them, and I was one happy mama, especially when he showed genuine appreciation for my efforts.

2.  Baby Girl opened a present from my parents that turned out to be a doll that she already has at home.  My mom began to pack it up for return to the store and told Baby Girl she could come along and pick something else she liked in place of the doll, but my sweet Sassypants had other ideas.

“I already have lots of dollies. Why don’t we give it to a boy or girl who doesn’t have any money and doesn’t get nice presents for Christmas instead, Nanny?” she suggested.

BUSTING.  WITH.  PRIDE.

3.  I’ve spent some really good times with my kids.  Not just sitting in the same room as them, using my iPhone or laptop.  I actually got down and dirty and made gingerbread with them, and ate a bunch for them as they were decorated.  I played old board games (You’ve got Trouble? Wait don’t run! THIS kind of Trouble is LOTS of fun!) and new games that Santa brought and genuinely talked with and listened to my kids.  I took Baby Girl to Disney on Ice with good friends and really chatted with her on the train ride there.  I held her hand in the scary parts of Walking with Dinosaurs.  I laughed with them.  I feel closer to them.  Nothing beats that.

4.  I watched my daughter – who prior to Christmas Day couldn’t stop talking about all the THINGS she wanted to get from Santa – get out of bed and show far more excitement about handing Huzbo and I the handmade pinecone glittered-to-the-max tree ornament she made at school and boxed in a self-decorated box, than she showed over almost all of the gifts Santa gave her.

5.  On Christmas morning, I finally woke up Baby Girl at 7:30am because I couldn’t wait any longer.  I crawled into her bed and wrapped my body around her sweet little warm curl.  As she slowly wakened, she asked if it was Christmas yet.  I told her it was and asked if she wanted to go see if Santa had brought her any gifts.  Her reply?

“In a minute, mommy.  The only present I want right now is for you to huggle me.”

MELT.

Turns out my Christmas spirit wasn’t something I had to find to create excitement and enthusiasm for myself and my family.

Christmas spirit was there all along – waiting to wrap its loving arms around my heart at the most unexpected moments.

Bye Bye Book

Last week, I was asked what the best book I read in 2013 was. As I thought about it, I was saddened to realize there were not very many books to choose from.

I usually read a mix of novels and parenting books. Over the past twelve months, I’ve read very few of either of those.

So, I re-committed to myself that I would tear my eyeballs away from social media for at least ONE hour every day to read. A book. A novel. Because writers need to read to hone their craft, right?

Now, here is where another problem came jingling in on a one-horse open sleigh.

I actually DO have a book in process right now. A book I’ve been reading. Slowly.
Well, more like avoiding. With a vengeance.

The story started out slowly. That’s ok. I’ve been there, done that. Sometimes the slow starters turn into the most incredibly beautiful works of literature.
Except that hasn’t happened yet.

To be fair, I’m only on page 61 of 503 pages. Yet, I have absolutely ZERO interest in the characters. Or the plot. Or the prose. I genuinely do not give one ounce of a shit what is going to happen in this story, or how it will end.

Yet somehow, I feel guilty about abandoning this novel.

Why?

The author is not here observing. I was not contracted to review the book. In fact, not a single person will know if I simply unfold the corner of the last page I read and place the book in my bookcase of finished books.

Except me. I will know.

I’m not sure why this bothers me. Is it the money? Do I not want to lose the value of the book because I paid for it?
No. I’m not a library person (ewww – other people might have SNEEZED in those books, people!) yet if I was, I would still feel guilty about not finishing a book.

Do I feel a certain obligation to the author, as a writer myself?
Nope.
I’m a new writer. I’ve never written a book. Yet, I’ve read some real stinkers from cover to cover in my past, simply because I didn’t feel right not finishing them.

So, what is the deal here?

I am worried this might be a personal challenge thing. Like not finishing a book is some sort of failure on my part. Like I’m not a REAL reader if I don’t finish every book I start.

No matter what the reason, I am at a point with this current book where I need to fish or cut book.

And I am going to do it.

I’m going to not finish this book.

I know by now you are dying to know what book it is.

Sorry – I’m not telling. Let’s face it – I could think it is a hunkajunk, and someone else (actually, many of them) could think it’s fantastic. That’s ok.

So, I’m turning a new page in my reading career. (Yeah, I know – but it was just too tempting to not use!)

I am forging ahead with a new novel. Removing the perp from my bedside table of must-reads. Relegating it to the already-read club. Sure, it will be an imposter over there.

But it’s an imposter where it is, anyway.

And I need to clear the way for me to sink my eyeballs into a great new novel again.

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