Thursday, May 19, 2011

Balance from Moscow to Pennsylvania

I competed on the balance beam when I was a midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy. My body was never intended for hard tumbling or serious vaulting--I don't have fast-twitch muscles (except perhaps in my fingers). Though I was never the star of any team I've been on, I've always been the "depth." I used to resent it, then laugh about it. These past few weeks and perhaps months I've discovered that being the depth of anything in life is where it's "at"--it's where I find my balance. Take a look at the photo of my dog Misha and his best friend Handsome (the boxer). They are both puppies and need to wrestle and play daily to find their doggie zen (i.e. puppy nap so that their Moms get a break).
At present I'm in the midst of helping my hubby complete his tour here in Russia, move back to the States, see my eldest graduate high school and go off to college, help my youngest get settled in a new high school, see both kids finish out their years on a positive note, make the bittersweet transition of saying good-bye to dear friends and a loved country that's been home for 2 years, and anticipating our new home. Did I mention I'm praying our dog doesn't barf the entire flight back to the States, and that I can't wait to be reunited with our parrot whom we couldn't bring to Russia?
Oh, and I'm writing a new book for Supers that I can't wait to share--it's due to my editor August 1st.
Writing is important to me--it's my calling, something that will always be part of my life. I fight to protect my career and precious writing time.
I'm not a writing superstar (yet--I AM a positive thinker!) but in fact I'm one of many writers who make up the Harlequin Superromance imprint. My story, my book, is needed to keep the promise of this line to the reader going. It's part of a bigger picture.
Balance is the most challenging aspect of my life as wife, mother, writer, Navy wife, friend, mentor, mentee. It's a daily struggle to not veer off of my specific writing/work goals for the day to take care of something for my husband, my kids, even my country. When I don't achieve balance it's almost always because of a poor choice on my part, fueled by my forgetfulness that I'm needed for the depth of strength of writers (including me) everywhere. We're all connected and each thing we do whether it's write, teach, sell, buy, or whatever your vocation--it's important.
How do you find balance in your daily life?


Kaelee said...

Hi Geri ~ Moving is such a happy/sad time. Something to look forward to and something left behind. I always consider each place we lived in as part of my home no matter how long ago we lived there.
I don't have a very balanced life in the winter anymore but now that spring is here I find I can spend time outdoors again and thats so wonderful. Even weeding the garden is wonderful. Now if I could just find something that would let me think housework was wonderful I will have found some balance. Reading, spending time cooking with my husband and visiting extended family are my other must haves in my life.

Geri Krotow said...

I agree, Kaelee--being outside in the garden, even if it's a pot of flowers, is the best. I love having my coffee or iced tea out on the porch. As for the housework, if you figure out what makes it wonderful, let me know!

Mary Preston said...

I tend to first do all the things I have to do just to have some me time. My mind is then free for whatever pleasures await.

Sonya said...

Balance doesn’t really work for me. I’m as likely to do something at 4am as I am to do it at a civilised time. I have trouble relating to people who plan things!

Beam was my best event too, which I don’t understand because it terrified me more than bars!

Anonymous said...

Hi Geri,
I do like balance and order in my life. Familiar routines. But, my best gymnastics event was the vault!

Debra Salonen said...

Thanks for taking the time in your busy, busy life, Geri, to write such a thoughtful post. You're so right--balance is key. When I get out of balance, I get rundown and become susceptible to germs. With grandkids around, I could be sick a lot if I don't work very hard to maintain my healthy balance.

You have a parrot! If you ever get a spare moment, I'd love for you to read my short story, A Hundred Years or More. The narrator is a parrot named Jack. Maybe when you get home and settled you can read it aloud to your parrot (it's only 11 pages) and see if he/she can relate. :-)

Good luck and safe travels!


Mary Brady said...

Geri, thanks for the reminder. Because most of us walk a precipice of one kind or another, balance is a lifesaver. Good luck with your move.

Autumn Macarthur said...

Geri, good question!

Balance in my everyday life? Wish I had some!

Things I find help with the chaos- taking a couple of minutes morning and evening to jot down in my journal what I give thanks for in my life, and note what I liked about my writing that day.

This especially is a huge help as it means no matter how busy I've been I must make time for writing so I can answer the question!

Hope all goes smoothly with the move- summer transfer season is a hectic time!

Kathleen M. Rodgers said...


You're a superstar writer to me. Can't wait for your next book.


JV said...

It isn't always easy to find balance, and some days it's impossible. However, I count myself lucky when there's balance overall.

If nothing else, your time spent abroad should give you fresh and different perspectives on things. While it's true that love is universal, the trappings of love can change dramatically from one society to another.

We'll be ready to welcome you back when you get here, and good luck with your dogs!

Jackie S. said...

Good luck with all involved in your move, Geri! Especially praying your youngest loves the new high school! Can't wait for your new book!

linda s said...

Good luck with all your life changes... so many at once! I'm sure your book will be delightful and I look forward to it.

Toni Kenyon said...

I struggle with balance. I'm 150% on everything or flat on my back asleep! I try to make sure that when I am up and about that I do a little of everything each day.

I strive to find a regular time for writing and have built it into my life. If that family know I am writing at a certain time, then they leave me alone to do that. It is important to me, so it is important to them as well.

Geri, I hope you, your dog and your family have a safe trip back to the States.

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