My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

Beth Kaplan logo

getting there?

7 p.m. I posted what’s below earlier in the day. Since then, 49 Muslims have been massacred in New Zealand by a man praising Donald Trump. And I just watched a devastating video on child refugees. 

I’m embarrassed by the pettiness of my complaints. I won’t delete the post. But I will try to rise above it.

2 p.m. Another former Ryerson student, Paula Turner, has a piece in the Globe today. One of her classmates wrote to point out that she’s the fourth person from that class to be published in the Globe. He wrote, Thanks to Beth Kaplan for her influence on our belief in ourselves, technique and stubborn commitment. 

For an impatient person, this last bit of the renovation is in some ways the hardest. My room is finished but uninhabitable, filled with paint and equipment. The painting is taking forever, there are myriad details to be remembered and finished, and in the meantime, I can’t get into my office for the scaffolding, can’t figure out where most things are in the house, am turning in frustrated circles, my stomach in knots, my shoulders rigid, sleeping badly, making lists at 4 a.m. I know it’s silly, but that’s how it is.

This too shall etc. But I am showing the stress. The other day, leaping out of a cab to connect with the King streetcar (which I missed), I left my favourite canvas bag behind, filled with clothing for the boys, a letter I’d just written to Eli, my leather gloves, the latest New Yorker. No one turned it in. Yesterday I got up early after a dreadful night to be ready at 8 for the window guys, returning with one more window. When they weren’t here by 11, I sent a furious email to the contact person, who wrote back to point out that the appointment was in fact for this afternoon. Things like that, happening a lot. And friends calling with serious, upsetting stories to tell – a husband with Alzheimer’s, another with a brain tumour, two – two! – with daughters who want to leave their husbands, a mother who died suddenly but peacefully. We’re in the zone.

But on the other hand, today it’s 7 degrees; I went in rubber boots into my frozen, slush-and-snow-covered backyard to prune the shrivelled brown clematis. I don’t ever remember my garden so icy and buried in mid-March. That’s the kind of winter it’s been.

Yes, first world problems etc. And we’re getting there, spring, my house, and I. Maybe.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

Some Blogs I Follow

Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.


Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.


I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.


Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.


Juliet in Paris, Spain and Beyond
Juliet is a Canadian who’s lived for decades in Paris and writes about her travels and the many things that interest her.