Well, folks, I last posted in September. Where have I been since then; so much to tell, so much to write.
I have no excuse for not writing but I do know that each and every time I thought of updating this blog tears would well up in my eyes as I know it would cause me to think of Ron and how much I have been missing him. As I type, the tears are streaming down my face. I have put it off too long so here goes …
The Western Academy of Photography
From September to December, my life has been the academy and homework. If you think writing or photography at the professional level is easy — think again. On the photography side of learning, it has been a very technical term: f-stops, shutter speeds, depth of field, sharp focus, composition, colour, B&W, the Zone system and so much more. Our writing homework has limited our time available to be out shooting and practicing our new information.
On the writing side of learning it, too, has been a very technical term — newspaper writing, travel writing, grammar, queries, craft and style and so much more.
I have been overjoyed with the assignments, the people I have met through interviews, and the amount of learning. While it has been enjoyable it has bee a lot of work.
At one point of the term, I though I must have been mad to have signed up for such a grueling workload. At one point of the term, I really thought I was no good at writing or photography at all.
My relaxed schedule I had come accustomed to during the summer turned into a stretched-for-time schedule to meet project due dates. I used to be in bed no later than 10:00PM now I am lucky to be in bed before midnight. There were many tears of frustration; there were many tears of wondering if I was doing the right thing.
I have missed Ron immensely. He would have been here encouraging me; being my sounding board; carrying my books; and being my shooting buddy. He would have been full of energy, enthusiasm and ideas for me. I am missing that each and every day.
What has kept me forging forward is that I want to offer some good to the world and to humanity with my new education and talents. I do not know what that looks like yet, but I have no doubt it will unfold as the school year unfolds. I do know Ron would be proud of me.
January 2013 brought with it a new round of courses at the academy. While last term we dealt with writing, photography, data asset management and Photoshop, this term we are focusing on more photography, desktop publishing, business, advanced writing, magazine writing and multi-media. Also this term we will be doing an internship and then be tasked with building a portfolio. Whew! So much to do, so little time.
Christmas & New Year’s Eve
I had a couple weeks off from my studies so I packed up the dog, camera gear and other necessary items to live in the Comox Valley for the Christmas Break.
Did I mention that I was sick? I had contracted a virus / bacterial infection last September. It hung on until I was finally prescribed antibiotics on December 30th. The doctor described me as a recycling Petrie dish – I kept infecting myself so I never got better. My energy was zapped for the past couple of months. Happily, I feel much better.
Back to Christmas – thanks to Bill and Leanne, I was able to rent their loft (above the garage) for the duration of my stay. Winston and I were very comfortable. The grand kids came for a sleepover and many visits. It was my home away from home and the best idea I have had for awhile.
I enjoyed Christmas Eve with my cousin Tonia and her family, Christmas morning with Bill, Leanne and Gracie, then Christmas dinner at daughter Meghan’s house with her husband, my son Stewart and his girls. It was a great day with lots of fun.
The next day was spent at my sister’s with her son and daughter-in-law and two kids visiting from Alaska. The rest of the days were filled with activities, kids and a day of cross-country skiing with Meghan.
New Year’s Eve was spent at Chevy Chase Beach Cabins in Port Townsend, Washington. I was invited by friends, Donna and Eddy, from the Comox Valley to join them. It is Eddy’s brother who owns Chevy Chase. It was a wonderfully relaxing place to ring in the New Year. January 1 I scooted back to the Comox Valley for a couple more days before returning to Victoria for school.
Yes, I have done many things since Ron passed away. There are, however, a couple items I have not changed or done and that some people think I should have by now. (I hope all that made sense.)
Last November I decided that I would get our three rings made into one. This made perfect sense and much more sense than having them sit in a jewelry or safety deposit box. I search Victoria for the perfect goldsmith to work with me and to understand what these rings meant to me and to Ron. The designer and goldsmith also had to understand that the new ring needed to be an item I would cherish the rest of my life on this earth. I found Idar of idar jewellry on Fort Street.
I wore our rings until January 7. They are now in the hands of Idar and will be transformed into another beautiful piece of jewellry. It will be ready for me to wear on Feburary 13 – the anniversary of Ron’s passing. I will celebrate this day for many reasons: Ron, the transformation of our rings and the transformation of my life during the past two years.
I realized today that spring is just around the corner and another cruising season is approaching. This made my heart heavy. It will be another cruising season without my partner in life. I also realized that I have very little joy in my heart. I feel that joy when I am with the kids and the grand-kids but for the most part it is absent. It does not mean that I am unhappy; it just means I lack joy. I just have to keep experimenting and searching and cherishing the joyful moments that come along.
It also means that I need to examine myself and determine if I am blocking the joy. I will admit that sometimes it does not feel right to be so happy when Ron is not with me — silly, eh? Give me some time and I will work past it. Perhaps my broken heart is in the mending stage. Perhaps I am healing.
One thing that does bring me joy is the thought of anther grandchild on the way. My daughter Meghan is pregnant with her first. May 11 is the due date. We think it will be a girl, but that has not been confirmed. My only dilemma is that this baby is due in May and I likely cannot be in the Comox Valley (due to my studies) for the first few weeks. I will make up for it in July!