The first apology is to my sister, because I’m not sure I’ll have had a chance to call and tell you about this before it posts, and I know you prefer not to have the blog be the first place you find out about things :-).
The second apology is to every blog in my Google Reader, where I’ve already hit the “mark all as read” button twice in two days, and may need to do it again. I have a relatively low threshold for unread posts, and when they get up over 500, I throw in the towel. I’m sorry to be missing your great posts! Hopefully, one way or another, I’ll catch up on some of them via visiting your blogs directly or through other blogs’ links.
The third apology is to all of you who read here for some gaps in content you may be seeing over the next couple of weeks; there may be a day skipped here and there, and more reliance on memes than usual. I’m not sure how much of the commentary and essays that you sometimes (occasionally?) find here will make an appearance – my opportunities for unprompted writing may be limited. (Then again, maybe you won’t even miss them!) On the other hand, I’ve had an unexpected windfall in time for book-reading, so I may actually get a little bit ahead on reviews here!
Anyway, here’s my excuse/reason for all the disclaimers:
My stepchildren spent the week leading up to the Fourth of July at my mother-in-law’s place, a couple of hours’ drive south from where we live. Tall Paul and I drove down there on July 3 to spend the weekend, and planned to drive back with the kids on the 5th. Mom-in-law has been suffering from occasional shortness of breath and dizziness lately, but she had several serious attacks of vertigo on Saturday – serious enough to warrant a 911 call and a trip to the ER for the 4th of July. As I write this on Monday, she is expected to be in the hospital for at least another day, as they continue to run tests and, we hope, get closer to a diagnosis and some sort of treatment plan. Right now, some sort of inner-ear problem is the most likely suspect – nothing life-threatening, but potentially fairly serious unless it’s managed properly.
Tall Paul took the kids back to their mom’s house on Monday morning, and I stayed at Mom-in-law’s – he’s driving back down later on. It looks pretty likely that she’ll need some in-home assistance when she is discharged from the hospital, so we’re staying a little longer to get things in place around the house, make sure we’re fully informed about the medical details, and assist with the arrangements for her return. It’s challenging to handle these things from 150 miles away, so we’re all very lucky that she has some very good friends and neighbors nearby who are happy to help out as they can. Chances are we’ll be making more frequent visits to northern San Diego County from now on, though, and I think we’ll all be going through some changes as a result of this episode.
My mother-in-law is one of the most giving, fun-loving, open-hearted people I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing, and I was very happy to become an official part of her family almost three years ago. I’ve mentioned her here before – most recently because of her gift of a Kindle, and she’s making my upcoming trip to BlogHer’09 possible too. I may be mentioning her more often as we adapt to whatever comes out of all this.
This has ended up being not quite as “brief” as I expected, but since we all know I suffer from chronic long-windedness, I guess no one – least of all me – should be surprised about that.