Cynthia’s Yearlong 50th Birthday Bash–August Update

J0341653As I described back in April (you can read the post here), I’m celebrating my 50th birthday with a year of activities, challenges, and FUN designed to honor this milestone. I’m calling it Cynthia’s Yearlong 50th Birthday Bash, and so far it’s been pretty amazing.

Here’s what I did in August to mark this big and badass year:

  • Launch—This month I launched the third (and hopefully last) draft of my memoir, My Guardian Angel Sings the Blues. I had planned at the beginning of the year to take several weeks off in August while Katie had summer vacation and go to the coast and write like a badass. By July I was focused on the impending launch of my law firm and wasn’t sure I could spare the time. A writing friend talked me into sticking with my original plan, so I dragged my aging laptop, old manuscripts, and a box stuffed with shredded notebooks, revisions scribbled on the backside of old drafts, and random pieces of paper. I organized the box of materials—which would have made the trip worthwhile all by itself—reviewed my prior manuscripts, and sketched out a new outline. I could see, at last, how certain scattered bits fit with other scattered bits. I managed to cobble together the first 100 pages, and boy, does it feel good!
  • Submission—This month I submitted to four different literary journals: The Portland Review, The Chattahoochee Review, Helen, and The Fourth River. Many of these journals had themes that tied into my work on infertility and adoption so I decided to take the plunge and submit to all four. Let’s see what happens!
  • New Things—1) I tried combining a vacation with a writing retreat and it worked really well. I will definitely be doing this again. 2) New sitters. I recently lost Jared when he decided not to return to California, so I was down to one sitter who can only do occasional weekend evenings. It was time to find new people, which given Katie’s quirks, can be difficult. So far, I think we lucked out with the two I found. 3) Frozen corn dogs. Not as good as the ones at the Alameda County Fair, but better than expected. Hey, who has time to cook when serious writing is being done? 4) Off-dry rose´ wine. I had this in Southern France years ago and enjoyed it, but could never find it in California. (Admittedly I never looked very hard.) But there it was on the wine menu, calling to me. Perfect for a warm summer evening.
  • 10590439_10101241410115973_3951743557725398763_nChallenge—I wanted to spend the weekend in San Diego—alone! As a single mom, coordinating the logistics to pull something like this off is a huge challenge because unlike most single moms, I don’t have an ex-spouse to assist with childcare. But I haven’t had a night away from Katie in over four years, so it was definitely worth the hard work to pull it off.
  • Fun—This month, in addition to relaxing at Sea Ranch with Katie, I went to San Diego for two days. Partly to attend an Isagenix conference and meet people in person who I’ve known virtually for almost a year, but mostly to see my dear friend and fellow writer, Jennifer Simpson, who was celebrating her 50th birthday. I haven’t seen Jenn in person for several years, so I was thrilled we managed to meet and have dinner together. There was cake as well as lots of laughter and catching up!

I’m five months into my yearlong birthday bash, and I’m loving the results. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Until next time,
Cynthia Patton

About Cynthia J. Patton

Writer, Editor, Advocate, Speaker, Special Needs Attorney, and Autism Mom. Also the Founder and Chairperson of Autism A to Z, a nonprofit providing resources and solutions for life on the spectrum.
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