My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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 Blessings. My son was just by for his 36th birthday celebration, combined with Thanksgiving – a turkey with all the fixins for the two of us. But a big container of leftovers went back with him for his sister and another for him. 

36 years ago, I was at the Civic Hospital in Ottawa, where they didn’t believe me when I said my first baby had come fast. This one came even faster; my doctor was renovating his kitchen and didn’t make it. The birth itself is not a happy memory, but holding my son for the first time is as happy as it gets.  And today, despite our Covid concerns, several big hugs. 

My daughter spent much of yesterday in a church kitchen, part of a team helping to make a huge meal for Indigenous elders and the ‘unhoused’, as she says. Sam took her boys to the playground and then came over, where he was asked to deal with the carrots, two enormous sacks of carrots that he hauled in, peeled, washed, and cut. My kids spent Thanksgiving making a feast for Indigenous elders. Pardon while I dab my eyes.

Meanwhile their non-Indigenous half-Jewish elder was cooking dinner for THEM. As it should be. The two of them love each other. He loves her children. He loves his work, even with the extreme insecurity of right now, when they don’t know from one day to the next if they’re going to stay open or not. 

A moment, right now, of peace in my life, after a stressful year. Leaving aside the pandemic and the political situation in this tinderbox of a planet, just thinking in my narrow way about my own tiny life – after the complete nightmare winter and spring of the downstairs apartment, all has been set to rights, and the man down there now keeps telling me how grateful he is to live there. The book, the source of so much stress, is flying on its own power – yes, a source of some anxiety, how to help it fly, but at least it exists. Another book has begun its very slow saunter into the world. And my father did not have an illegitimate child with a student of his. (A friend of Mum’s who read the blog wrote to say, “Yes, she told me the story about a student having your dad’s baby. Why would she invent such a thing?” Why indeed?)

U of T got in touch today to cancel my class, due to start next week, because of the Stage Two shutdown. The shit show in Washington is devastating, crushing the soul. Spent part of today pruning and closing down the garden, as the days grow shorter and colder. A beloved friend is losing mobility to ALS and has arranged for assisted dying for when she’s ready. A ghastly woman who once called herself a handmaid, the polar opposite of RBG, is going to sit on the U.S. Supreme Court for decades. 

But right now, I’d like to take a moment of celebration. They’re making their way, my children, my grandchildren, my books. 



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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.

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