Today begins the start of four archive posts from non-fiction and memoir writer D.G. Kaye known to most of us as Debby Gies. In her first post from 2016, Debby shares the strategy that she adopted to cope with a particularly difficult time when her husband was seriously unwell. As you will read, it was a time to let go of many familiar routines and task but a time to embrace some different, even for a short time each day to allow time to breathe.
#Coloring Books and Life – One Day at a Time by D.G. Kaye
I have a mantra. It’s been used by many, advised by many, including myself – it’s called ‘One Day at a Time’.
I’ve often preached this saying to others when they’re feeling overwhelmed, as words of wisdom to help lessen their load, but I was usually guilty of not following my own advice – until this past year.
It’s easy for me to pass on words of encouragement, because I’ve always been a builder-upper of others. But when it comes to myself, I know I sometimes have a difficult time taking my own advice. But this year, I learned the meaning behind that phrase.
I’m a bit OCD when it comes to my ‘to do’ list and getting everything accomplished I set out to do in my own self-imposed time restrictions. But when life threw me some frightening curve balls for the better part of the first half of this year, with my husband’s health issues, I had to take heed to my own words or I’d have been swallowed up by the abyss of pressure I put on myself.
Duty called. There was no book writing, I had no time, nor the mental capacity to focus on writing. If I wasn’t running to doctors and hospitals on a daily basis, I was nursemaid to my husband’s needs, and couldn’t concentrate on anything while I worried every minute if he needed meds, food, his legs rubbed, some words of encouragement, or if he was too silent left unattended in another room for more than twenty minutes, or that he may have passed out yet again.
My blogs were written in midnight hours, and blog reading became my escape from the madness, reminding me that I was still part of a community, other than living in the realms of life and death. I learned quickly that I couldn’t make plans for tomorrow, next week, or even think about next year. My life was on hold, and I only had time to do what needed to be done for my husband at any given moment.
My ‘to do’ lists became everything medical – appointments to make, follow up with, chase doctors, and go back and forth from long hospital days and nights. This was when I learned to Let Go. I could no longer worry about my book waiting for me to come back to and all of my self-imposed deadlines to do the things I normally did on a daily basis. I learned to surrender to the moments and let go of letting to dos overwhelm me, and stop dwelling on the things piling up I’d have to catch up on. I learned to accept each day as it came, in gratitude that my husband was alive and that he was my only priority in those moments.
What spurred me to write this post is a coloring book I purchased that caught my eye in a grocery store one day. The pages had beautiful art to color in, but within each picture is an inspirational quote.
Now I’m going to be honest, I failed art in high school. Heck, I could never even stay within the lines in a coloring book, which coincides with my atrocious handwriting. But I was always a writer. I had a lot of creativity in my head – it’s just that my head could never translate to my hand, my creative ideas. This is similar to the way I design my book covers – in my head. Sure I have an artist who makes my covers for this very reason, my lack of art skills. But I come up with what I’d like to see for my covers, and describe them to my artist, who then creates my visions.
But getting back to the coloring book, when I pull it out, usually late at night, after the computer is shut down, and I’m looking for an hour to relax, I open it to a new page and I’m immediately overwhelmed by the amount of detail there is to fill in. At first glance, I think to myself, Omg, this page will take forever with all those tiny details.
But I developed a strategy. I start in one corner with one color, then decide where in the picture I wish to use the same color. I then move on to a new color and do the same, using color as my guide to the next place to work on. Within 2 hours I realized I’ve completed a page, and I stand back and say, “It’s just like life, one day at a time, one color at a time, and eventually I get there.”
*Coloring book photos from Posh Coloring book by Deborah Muller
©D.G. Kaye July2016
This is D.G. Kaye’s latest release in December 2017.
About Twenty Years: After “I Do”.
In this personal accounting, D.G. Kaye shares the insights and wisdom she has accrued through twenty years of keeping her marriage strong and thriving despite the everyday changes and challenges of aging. Kaye reveals how a little creative planning, acceptance, and unconditional love can create a bond no obstacle will break. Kaye’s stories are informative, inspiring, and a testament to love eclipsing all when two people understand, respect, and honor their vows. She adds that a daily sprinkling of laughter is a staple in nourishing a healthy marriage.
Twenty years began with a promise. As Kaye recounts what transpired within that time, she shows that true love has no limits, even when one spouse ages ahead of the other.
Here is one of the recent reviews for the book
As I closed the last chapter in D. G. Kaye’s latest book, I felt as though I had just had a conversation with a friend about aging and marriage. In Twenty Years After I Do, Debby reflects on love and changes through the aging process, as her subtitle suggests.
My own husband is slightly younger than I, but I could relate to the author’s personal experience in dealing with her mate’s hearing loss, illness and the challenges of retirement. The author does not sugar coat problems, but readers can expect down-to-earth solutions in this combination memoir/self-help book. Indeed, she affirms, marriage is a like a plant that needs feeding, nurturing, and caring so it will “thrive and continue to bloom.”
Writer Debby advises from a place of deep affection. It is obvious she has married her best friend, one who dubs her variously as Cubby, Cub, and Deb, depending on the circumstances. And yes, couples will fight, she admits, but the partners must learn to fight fair. Her magnanimous nature comes through in this startling statement: “Just because I’m not talking to him doesn’t mean I won’t cook him dinner.” (81)
The author’s early years with a narcissistic mother have left an imprint on all her relationships, including the supreme one with her beloved husband Gordon, twenty years her senior. Yet, in this 108-page book she has translated life lessons from her potentially crippling childhood into the wisdom of happily married life.
Her secret? This author/marriage partner has made a study of her husband, not as a scientific specimen, but as the man she loves body, soul, and spirit.
Read the reviews and buy the book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077V386TL
and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B077V386TL
Other books by D.G. Kaye
Read all the reviews and buy the books: http://www.amazon.com/author/dgkaye7
and Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/D.G.-Kaye/e/B00HE028FO
More reviews and follow Debby on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/dgkaye
About D.G. Kaye
Debby Gies is a Canadian nonfiction/memoir author who writes under the pen name of D.G. Kaye. She was born, raised, and resides in Toronto, Canada. Kaye writes about her life experiences, matters of the heart and women’s issues.
D.G. writes to inspire others. Her writing encompasses stories taken from events she encountered in her own life, and she shares the lessons taken from them. Her sunny outlook on life developed from learning to overcome challenges in her life, and finding the upside from those situations, while practicing gratitude for all the positives.
When Kaye isn’t writing intimate memoirs, she brings her natural sense of humor into her other works. She loves to laugh and self- medicate with a daily dose of humor.
I love to tell stories that have lessons in them, and hope to empower others by sharing my own experiences. I write raw and honest about my own experiences, hoping through my writing, that others can relate and find that there is always a choice to move from a negative space, and look for the positive.
“Live Laugh Love . . . And Don’t Forget to Breathe!”
“For every kindness, there should be kindness in return. Wouldn’t that just make the world right?”
When I’m not writing, I’m reading or quite possibly looking after some mundane thing in life. It’s also possible I may be on a secret getaway trip, as that is my passion—traveling.
Connect to Debby Gies
Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/author/dgkaye7
About me: http://www.wiseintro.co/dgkaye7
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/@pokercubster (yes there’s a story)