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Every New Age Is My Favorite

I am a happy mama! This week has been bittersweet perfection, like when you crave baking chocolate real hard and shove it in your face and it tastes like dirt but drenches your soul in serotonin.

Last weekend, some friends and I celebrated the short and bittersweet life of a friend whose favorite t-shirt said "I WOULD CUDDLE YOU SO HARD," and that pretty much sums it up.




It was like a magical reunion of sorts, because he had so many friends. Though I had only met him as an adult, he happened to have known a bunch of my childhood friends. One of my oldest buddies flew in from Arizona, met my daughter for the first time, and taught her how to fly a kite.

Definitely watch this one in full-screen to see the faraway cuteness.



And she's a constant reminder that life goes on. I enjoy being her mother more every year of her life. Sure, I have those moments when I realize she's lost her baby knuckle dimples, but any sadness I have now is wrapped in warm, cuddly joy and excitement and pride and contentment that I get to help this child grow up bigger, stronger, smarter, and kinder every day.

Somehow, I have raised a child who loves going off to school and riding the bus home. (Her fantastic school surely has something to do with that, too!) This has made my writing life a lot easier, as it gives me more than an hour each weekday between work and bus arrival. (Plus early mornings when I wake up before the sun! Woohoo!) I've sent off 85,000 words of my manuscript to my beta readers, and I'm hurtling toward the finish line.

On top of that, I am also enjoying my house more--and that does my emotional health so much good! One reason is that my daughter has suddenly made school bus and neighborhood friends, some of whom came to our house on Labor Day and picked up all the Legos in the basement so they could throw a surprise party for a toy dinosaur. (Am I dreaming?) While I did the dishes, mostly uninterrupted, I got to listen to--instead of the usual whines of "I'm bored"--the stampeding of joyous feet through my house, the giggles and squeals of three little girls, and shouts of "Your house is so much fun!" (All of a sudden the toy and art clutter everywhere makes me feel generous and fun, rather than crabby about the mess!) And then there were heart-melting Anne of Green Gables-type comments, like, "I've seen you before and always wanted to be your friend!" 

This morning, no kidding, I awoke from a dream about flying through the sky on the back of a gold, red, and green dragon and went to the window to find a gorgeous view of fog rolling down the hillside and a family of deer leaping through the mist.

Basically I am finding so much joy in my life right now that I'm almost--almost--not terrified of what happens once I finish my manuscript.

I have about one week until my self-selected deadline for finishing this draft. My book has taken some dark and edgy turns that I really like--this one feels so much harder and sharper-cut than my last version. I hope next week goes as smoothly as this one did!

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