Another chapter begins…

I am finally beginning to feel it.  It’s a subtle shift inside.  On the outside not much changes for me, but everything is different.

My husband Ned, whose job was eliminated on November 1, begins a new chapter in his work life on Monday. And I, happily, cease being the sole wage earner in the family.

cover.finalThere were some changes – not so much in “what I did,” but “how I did” – that I deliberately made when we knew that Ned was going to be out of work.  We learned of his job loss two weeks after I published The Can Do Chronicles, and I was just coming to terms with being an author, and seriously thinking and planning and trying to figure out what I wanted to do with the whole Can Do “thing.”

I quickly put that planning on hold to pay full attention to my grant writing and development consulting work.  My Can Do decision was to “pull myself in” and keep an intense focus on my work and on my health. I was afraid of getting sick, very afraid as colleagues, friends and neighbors coughed and blew their noses all through the holidays. Because I am a contractor, I only get paid when I am working. Getting sick was just NOT an option!  Neither was allowing the little black cloud of depression to creep back in.  So, when I had breaks from my work, I gave myself permission to relax (well, sort of!) and watch HGTV, movies and TED Talks rather than write blogs and begin making the revisions to the book and calling publishers. (I CAN DO those things now – and I will!)

Last night on my plane ride home from Dallas, I reflected for a bit about how different it feels to be in a position to do what I want to do rather than what I need to do, even when they might be the very same thing.  The journey of last few months felt like I was shutterstock_113245282driving when I was very tired or when it was raining REALLY hard – actually like driving when I was tired and it was raining hard.  Focus is paramount and the amount of effort and attention needed and stress levels increase as each mile passes, with little relief about any progress made. The only question that kept going through my head is the one we all asked incessantly as children, “are we there yet?”

In the coming weeks, I have several major projects due for both of my clients, so my workload will not change.  But my approach to it will.  While it won’t be like a drive in the country on a bright summer day with the top down, I will be more relaxed at the wheel, able to listen to the music, take in some of the scenery, and think about where I am and where I want to go.

McKA final note.  While this “ride” was a tough one for me, it was tougher on Ned.  He was the one who lost his job, the one looking for work and being disappointed when he heard “sorry, not you,” or sometimes heard nothing at all after extensive interviews.  His new job as Director of Development at the Father McKenna Center in downtown DC is a phenomenal opportunity that brings him full circle in many ways, combining his strong fundraising skills with his ministry background in service to those most in need.  Congratulations, dude!

During the 90 days of job search (him) and job intensive (me), our Can Do held together – and held us together.  We took very good care of each other in getting to this new chapter though the miles and miles of rain and fatigue. This journey has shown me once again that Gratitude + Hope are a powerful, strong and enduring combination.

The Can Do Chronicles Continue….stay tuned!

The Water is Wonderful!

coverI am an ambivalent author no more!  In fact, I am getting very psyched for the launch of The Can Do Chronicles next Friday, October 4. The journey getting here has been a bit like trying to decide whether to jump into the chilly water after driving for hours to get to the lake…  I have jumped in and the water is great!  Or, perhaps a more appropriate metaphor is the fishbowl… I am in the fishbowl, in oh-so-many ways.  The water is great and I am swimming like a proverbial fish.

As my friends and colleagues are learning that I have written and am publishing the e-book, I am getting calls and questions asking “so, what’s it about?”  It is the story of the last three years of my life, and my husband Ned’s life by association. But, more than the ups and downs and ins and outs of his job loss, my hip replacement and chemo and our 400 mile move, it is the story about what changed inside of me during these months and years – and how I went from having a semi-permanent chip on my shoulder to a pretty permanent song in my heart.

It is also a guide to taking the “but” out of “yes, but” for those who want to use it that way. I introduce the three central questions that now guide all of my decision making. The questions seem so deceptively easy to ask, yet the answers are not always easy to hear – a conundrum to be sure!  But those tricky little questions work.  Yes, they work wonders.

shutterstock_94875910The Can Do Chronicles will be available on as an e-book, but the good news is that you don’t actually have to own a Kindle to read the book. You can read it on any computer, smart phone, or tablet using Amazon’s free Kindle software available at:

To celebrate the launch, for the first three days the book will cost only $2.99. That’s less than a coffee at Starbucks. After that, the price goes up to $4.99 – less than a good glass of Pinot Gris. For under $5 you can change your life.  That’s quite a deal.

Please help me pass the word as the launch gets closer!  Follow and share The Can Do Chronicles on Facebook. You will be glad you did.

Thanks and always remember