A to Z Challenge Reflections

2016-05-10 01:48:37 gwynn-rogers

2016 Survivor

This is my third year of surviving my A to Z Blogger’s Challenge, but this year was quite multifaceted.  I did not think I would survive the Challenge because of my husband’s illness, and our decision to move.  Yet, what I discovered is that because of my focus on the subject of caregiving my thoughts came more readily than in years past.  Initially, since my husband’s illness broad-sided me, I gushed emotion.  My feelings spilled out all over the place.

However, eventually my brain and my heart communicated as I realized that my friends and readers might want to know what I was undergoing, how my husband and I were functioning together, and the results from our experiences.  Sooner or later my posts showed the positive side of my husband’s and my actions and not just the sad and frustrating aspects of caregiving.  Today’s quote on my calendar shares a good overview of my experience: “Nothing WORTH HAVING comes easy.”

Caregiving for family is NOT easy as besides the duties associated with caregiving, you have the emotions connected with your relationship… for whatever it is worth.  Caregiving for someone you don’t know or have a relationship with would not bare the extreme emotional aspect that I experienced with my husband.  Even, when I helped care for my mother the dynamics were quite emotional as we had a long line of baggage we had not dealt with in my growing up years.

Since my brief overview of caregiving for the Challenge, I have run into friends who are also caregiving for family.  They appreciated my being open about how emotional and challenging caregiving can be for family.  These people had assumed that taking on the project of caregiving for their loved ones would be easy.  SURPRISE!

So the words of wisdom for your caregiving project is to “Give yourself oxygen first, before you try to care for another person!”  Thanks to the many people who supported me in the Challenge as I truly appreciate your support… I NEEDED it!  I SURVIVED!

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Insecure Writer's Support Group

2016-05-04 15:58:30 gwynn-rogers

IWSG Badge

Good morning, all,

It’s the first Wednesday in the month and IWSG Time has come around again.

I thank Alex Cavanaugh for creating the group and my friend, Patricia Garcia, for inviting me to join.

Currently, I’ve been overwhelmed as I have just completed April’s A to Z Blogger’s Challenge. This year is the first time that I disclosed a theme, Caregiving, as I am in the midst of caring for my sick husband.  To add to the fun, I’m also literally in the process of moving.  I’m a split personality as I’m here, my books are there, and I have no idea of where I’m going to put the rest of my belongings.  There is some light at the end of the tunnel as we will complete our move May 14th.  Wish me luck at finding anything!

In the process, our cable company turned off our cable as we could not get it through their heads that we needed cable at both residents.  Fortunately, I was without the use of my computer after the April Challenge.

Writing for the Challenge helped me process my thinking.  I started out by whining or expressing my emotions as I was going nuts.  I guess I needed the outlet. Eventually, I realized what I was doing, and worked at providing more information about the caregiving process, as it is not as simplistic as some people might imagine.  Being open and real is highly important to me, in my writing.  With a husband and wife, part of the caregiving process is dealing with our emotions… what are they and why are they suddenly appearing.  There is also the process… running up and down stairs for meds and foods.  I also had to deal with my husband’s passing out and taking him to Urgent Care because of the damage he did to his body in his falls.

Now, as my husband becomes healthier, the dynamics change somewhat.  I have relief from some of my work as my husband can help care for himself now.  It has been four long months and I’m very tired, but relief is in sight.

I still need to analyze my caregiving process more thoroughly so that I can clearly show people what I experienced.  But the Challenge was a great start for me as it made me think.

Amazingly, I survived the Challenge.  My writing is beginning to take form.  My husband survived my caregiving, and like the Little Engine that Could, I’m still chugging up that hill moving boxes to our new home.

This has been quite a process for me to be a caregiver, write, and move all at the same time. I so dearly appreciate all the support I received.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart!





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Z = Zip, Zero, Zilch, Zombie, and Zany

2016-04-30 02:50:12 gwynn-rogers




Today is the last day of the 2016 A to Z Blogger’s Challenge and I can’t believe I survived!  This month, besides the Challenge, I have been caring for my sick husband, preparing to move, changing addresses, and moving bit by bit.  My life, my books, and my world are upside down.


There is nearly Zip, Zero, and Zilch for me here in the house.  I’m stressed so I must look like a Zombie with non-focused, bug-eyes, yet I still attempt at some form of being Zany.  But, I’m dead to the world… so I give up!


I’m probably so tired that my brain has Zipped off for a vacation, but in the process of driving home from running errands today, I looked in my rear-view mirror and what did I see, but a Zombie in the car behind me.  It appeared to be a Changling as I could not determine if the figure was a man or a woman or even what color skin the zombie had.  The size of the head changed, the face changed, the style of the hair cut changed every time the figure moved.  The head ballooned into a gigantic black figure with a box-cut hair style and black glasses one minute.  I turned my head to look again and the head shrunk to a pea-size.  I never was able to determine what the figure actually looked like.  I SWEAR I’m not on any meds or Pot!



Evidently, I have lost my marbles in the process of writing the A to Z Challenge along with my other activities and duties. The Challenge evidently taxed my brain!

Thank you for stopping by my blog to read and comment.  I was not able to be as social this year in following others’ blogs because of all my various duties, so please forgive me.  However, this year I did focus on one subject… my caregiving.  It honestly has been a tough ride for me, so I DO appreciate your support!!   I SURVIVED!!!  Gwynn







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Y = Yearning and Yelling

2016-04-29 02:34:34 gwynn-rogers


“When we long for life without difficulties, remind us that oaks grow strong in contrary winds and diamonds are made under pressure.”  Author Unknown

“A happy life is spent in yearning, earning, and learning.”   Lillian Gish 

“Fear of the future and longing for the past are major factors which impede appropriate action.”  Brenda Shoshanna


I am yearning for our move to be complete and for us to get settled in our new home so I can enjoy my LONG winter’s nap!  I yearn for my life to ease up as I feel like the world is riding on my shoulders.  I yearn for a break!

Then my husband yearns for his health to return.  He has learned a very hard lesson about living life in a healthy manner.  Due to his unhealthy life style he now pays for his mistakes via low blood pressure.  He yells in the middle of the night after he passes out as he voices his frustration and scare with his predicament.  He does a great job of startling me too.  I also yearn for his health to return.  I hope it is possible.


My husband has hurt himself in numerous ways, both physically and emotionally so he yearns to have a normal and happy life again.  BUT he must change his ways.  Change is hard to come by.


What is fascinating to me is that today when my husband visited his doctor for his last check up from the hiatal hernia surgery, the doctor said that usually more women than men experience hiatal hernias… it is part of growing old… so yearn for healthy ways so you don’t grow ill like my husband.


When you are frustrated do you sometimes yell to express disappointment or anger or depression?  Sometimes after one of my husband’s events, he yells and yells like a little kid, as he wants his former life back.  His expression indicates his lack of patience in his attempt to grow and change.  Sadly, progressing to a healthy life style takes time as we need to define what needs to change, create a plan, and then actively work at morphing.  Sometimes it seems impossible to bring about the necessary transformation.


What our heart desires is sometimes difficult to come by.  Yearning by itself will not solve the problem.  Of course screaming doesn’t solve the problem either… but sometimes it sure feels good!










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X = Xenial

2016-04-28 01:51:56 gwynn-rogers



“ He makes people please with him by making them first pleased with themselves.”  Lord Chesterfield 

“Don’t consider how many you can please, but whom.”        Publius Syrus


Xenial defined: Of or concern of hospitality toward guests.  Hospitable, especially to visiting strangers or foreigners. Of the relation between a host and guest; friendly.


Hospitable must be my middle name as I love having friends and acquaintances over to entertain them.  I enjoy preparing and presenting meals and drinks, making people comfortable, in the comfort of my normally organized home.


But soon, I have a challenge for me, as our neighbors will be moving us to our new home, a small apartment.  After their hard work and help, I want to reward them with something special to show my appreciation for their muchly needed help.

Boxes will be everywhere.  I’ll be clueless as to where to find everything in the new apartment.  The men will be exhausted, hungry, and thirsty.

If you were in my shoes… tired too, what would you do to THANK these wonderful people for the back breaking work that they volunteered to do for you?


Do you go order pizzas or Subway sandwiches or hamburgers and drinks?  What would you do to show appreciation and hospitality for the fantastic things these people did?

Xenial2 I NEVER in a million years can thank my friends and neighbors enough for the fantastic service they have done for me and my husband.







Posted in: 2016 A - Z Bloggers' Challenge Read more... 16 comments

6 Responses to Blog

  1. I am enjoying your musings”very much Gwynn! I am so impressed at your writing and rich life. You believe in yourself. Yes! You are perfect person to find mentors for young people. High quality guidance and encouragement can make or break a child IMHO. what a worthy pursuit. Now. Where oh where is that sophomore social studies paper on the decline of America!! What a treasure it must be. Was that Mr. Stannard? Were you In Honors English, and did you know Shelley Bigelow?

    GREAT idea to post your blog link on Facebook for those of us who need all the help we can get

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Somehow your reply snuck in on my blog and it didn’t tell me. Sorry for the late response. As for finding mentors, because of the economy most of the mentoring programs have gone POOF… sadly. So I’m struggling to find some new mischief to get into! As to that sophomore social studies paper, I had good old Mr. Douthwright! Remember him? Now, I nearly fell over laughing… ME in Honors English????? NOOOOOOO, I don’t think so!! I’m a slow bloomer!!! 😉

      Thank you for your kind comments about my writing. It helps being invisible. Plus, I’m in a couple of writing groups and I learn from others.

  2. Solveig says:

    What a great post! I am glad that the tree did not cause any major problems and led to a good friendship. There is something good in everything!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Solveig, It is lovely to see you here. That tree was scary and I’m so glad no one was hurt. It is strange introducing one’s self to your neighbors and asking to remove your tree from their roof. The best part is that due to the structural damage taking place in their roof, before the tree hit, the insurance company got to pay for it. I have been friends with them for about 38 years now.

  3. Nathan Kirby says:

    Excellent essay, Gwynn! I can say from personal experience: you are a natural caregiver. One of the best! You took me right in and what DIDN’T you do to help me out? You were my foster mom. I think you do that with everyone! And you NEVER ask for anything in return, except that people do well.

    You are one of the strongest, most compassionate, empathetic, nurturing people I’ve EVER known! It’s not in your blood: it IS your blood! I’m really surprised you weren’t a doctor or nurse or someone who ran/runs a shelter for abused or wayward people and-or animals. Sometimes such a life has its little rewards. Here I am 22 years later singing your praises to the heavens and thanking you for all you did for me from the bottom of my heart! Hell, I’m upset I can’t get up there to help you move!!

    You’re doing great, Gwynn! No one cares more or better than you! Please keep blazing that ever-growing trail of aided, helped, saved, and eternally grateful people!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Nathan, you are such a wonderful young man. I enjoyed having you around the house. I think you helped us all at the same time. The funny part is that my Numerology all dictates that I AM a caregiver. I guess I was born that way. I LOVE helping people who I care about… you were fun to have around. I truly missed you when you signed up for the Air Force.

      Now you are grown and a caregiver for your father. You and I know how hard this job is and I take my hat off to you. You are doing a ‘stand-up’ job of keeping your father well. Remember to take care of yourself too, as you have one HECK of a job to handle. I’m sending you HUGS!

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About Gwynn

smaller picMy friends pushed me right out of my safe hiding spot, and assured me that my writing and stories deserved to be heard. These stories include fun times and sad times, as I grew up.  They paint a picture of me – define me.

After 20 years of sales and marketing experience in the fields of real estate, high tech, and corporate travel, I have moved on to the career of “Grandma.” When not teaching my granddaughters an extensive vocabulary of “alley-oop-boop, ups-a-daisy, cowabunga or bummer,” I can be found hunting for mentors for the Kitsap Youth Mentoring Consortium, or chasing my fantasies on my treadmill. I currently freelance for magazines.

Also, I wish to thank my friend, William Kahlo Jones, photographer, for the use of his picture for my cover page.  To see more of Bill’s photos go to:


Bill Jones, Photographer

Bill Jones, Photographer


Copyright Gwynn Rogers 2012.  All rights reserved.


6 Responses to About Gwynn

  1. Penni Marvel says:

    These were WONDERFUL and heartwarming to read. You are a blogger! And a writer. GOOD FOR YOU!

    Penni : )

  2. Carol says:

    Immensely grateful for your insight and support—you are an enormous impetus to me–encouragement to face my limitations, real or imagined.

  3. Mary Jo Doig says:

    After hitting and missing you on FB, I finally decided to Follow your blog, Gwynn. Thanks for having me here. I hope your husband is on the other side of his health challenge and look forward to reading your blogs!

    • Gwynn Rogers says:

      Hi Mary Jo, I have been without a computer for over a week. Plus, as you may have noticed I have been remiss in posting as I have a great deal on my plate at the moment. I will attempt to keep up with the 2016 A to Z Blogger’s Challenge. My theme will be caregiving. However, we may be moving in April too so heaven’s knows whether I will finish the Challenge this year. I do have my fingers crossed.

      I DO enjoy reading your notes, but I haven’t seen too many lately. Thanks for connecting with me! I look forward to further chats with you.

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