Update - Focusing on What's Important
Updated: Jun 5
Expanding on my last post . . . (This is rather personal, but wanted to be able to refer the curious here since I've received emails inquiring about my absence from blogging.) For the last few years, I've been distracted from blogging for a number of reasons. The primary one being my wife's health. In 2015, she was diagnosed with terminal pulmonary fibrosis. This condition is a hardening of the lung tissue that slowly suffocates a person. She was told that without a lung transplant, her life expectancy would be 2-5 years. She is still with me (thank God) and doing relatively well. Good days. Bad days. I'm sure many readers have experienced similar things in their own personal lives and can understand how that kind of news tends to change one's perspective on many things-especially what's important and worthy of your time. Outward pressures often make us look inward and take inventory. That effort has has been very worthwhile. Of course, we've been busy with treatments, doctor's appointments and research. My wife is currently being evaluated for a double lung transplant and we are hopeful of what that could mean for her. We should know something by July. Prayers for God's will and direction would be appreciated.
And, in addition to my wife's health problems, I've had two daughters go through some serious health issues as well. Trying times to say the least. But God is good and I am grateful.
As far as my writing and research goes, although I've not been as busy as I was in previous years, I've still been at it. I wrote an article for the Shenandoah Valley Battlefield Foundation's quarterly magazine last year and have written another one that will be published some time this year. I've also been working with SVBF on a historical Civil War Trails marker. And I've written some pieces for American Digger Magazine. I also had two historical markers featured in the recently published, A Guidebook to Virginia's African American Historical Markers. I wrote the text for one of those markers and co-authored the text for the other one. And I'm still considering writing a couple of other books and have continued to gather research material along those lines, but writing a book is an all consuming effort and my heart is simply not in it at this time.
So I continue to focus my attention on where it's most needed - my wife, my children, my grandchildren, my own personal rejuvenation and focus, and my home. I'm trying to put into practice some of the ideas and philosophies of writers like Wendell Berry and Eric Sloane. This has helped me bring that renewed focus where it really needs to be. But I do hope to post some reflective pieces over the summer. Wishing you all peace and grace during these perilous times.