Hi, I’m Beth, and I’m happy to say that I live in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Most of my early life was spent as a preacher’s daughter in Eastern North Carolina, but I always felt most at home in the Appalachians. So, four years ago, my family and I followed our hearts west. As they say, I wasn’t born here, but I got here as quick as I could.
I’m married, with two children, who, if I may say so, are simply the most extraordinary children ever. My youngest just left for college. Empty nest? Are you kidding? They might be gone, but their stuff isn’t. Books, papers, art supplies, computer parts, amps, guitars—I am still surrounded by the remnants of my children’s lives. But I don’t really mind. Truth is—I’m not quite ready to completely let go.
My abiding interests and passions—besides raising my children—are reading, hiking, porch sitting, and trying to grow a little every day in my spiritual life. I have been a secretary, library assistant, and a janitor. My husband is a carpenter and handyman. And both of us want to write.
I used to write. Poetry, essays, fiction—even made a bit of money at it—but the past twenty years have been hard ones. They’ve taken a toll, and I’ve lost something. Oh sure, I still write, but it comes hard. That’s why I started this blog—to see if I can find what I lost and to see if I can ever hope to become a real writer again.
Thanks for reading. I appreciate it.
November, 2013–An Update on Our Lives
So much has changed since I wrote the above six years ago (in 2007) that I thought a brief update might be in order.
Some of the changes were good. Our aforementioned progeny, Ariel and Benjamin, graduated from college with honors. We are especially proud of that since Blue Ridge Blue Collar Man and I only managed to make it through high school, but dreamed of better things for our children. We are grateful to see those better things come to pass. In addition, Ariel got married soon after graduating to a fellow UNC-CH graduate, Cameron. He is a fine young man, and he clearly loves our daughter…and she, him.
In other good news: as I had hoped, writing on my blog helped me find my muse, so that I began to get published and even managed to make money at it again. Many thanks to my blog readers for all those kind comments about my writing that encouraged me and made me believe that maybe I really am a writer after all.
But there was bad news, too, and plenty of it. No need to reprise it all, but the latest has been my diagnosis with breast cancer. After a bi-lateral mastectomy and other treatment, I’m just beginning to feel some semblance of normal. Whatever that is. It is certainly, without a doubt, a new normal, and adjustment is an on-going thing.
But so is life. And so it goes. I am thankful to be alive and mindful of my blessings. I am so grateful that my children seem to be happy and thriving. I’m always proud when people say nice things to me about my children, but what makes me happiest is when people tell me they are kind.
I think there is nothing—nothing— more important than kindness. And there is nothing that pleases me more than seeing my children manifest it in their lives. May it always be so.