mabfan (Michael A. Burstein) (mabfan) wrote,
mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)

What Kind of Day It Has Been

One of my friends whom I met through LiveJournal (and you know who you are) was recently dealing with a family crisis, and so I dropped him an email to let him know he was in my thoughts. He thanked me, but asked me how I was holding up myself, and noted that I've only been blogging sporadically. My guess is that the question has mostly to do with how I'm dealing with the most obvious change in my life. I began to reply directly to him, then realized that it made sense to reply publicly.

The fact is that my precipitous drop in blogging is only party due to the recent death of my mother. It is true that her death does fill my thoughts daily; I remember how my father's death back when I was in college did something similar. And it's also true that my brothers and I are dealing with a variety of estate issues that keep us busy. For example, I had to finish packing all my stuff and I have to arrange for it to be moved to a storage unit in Boston. I've also been the brother dealing with the inscription for Mom's side of the monument, and that's been emotional as well as time-consuming.

But what's been keeping me away from the blogosphere more than anything else, honestly, is work. I've got a major deadline coming up at my day job, and I really need to focus as intently as possible on getting my work done. Estate issues are already distracting me too much during the day; I can't afford the added distraction of figuring out what I want to share next on this blog.

And there's also the fact of pay copy. Writing fiction or essays for which I'm getting paid have to take precedence over the blog, especially if I've made a commitment to an editor. Every minute I spend composing a "Robert's Rules" commentary or just talking about my personal life is another minute I didn't use towards pay copy...and some of my editors read the blog, and would know that I'm putting LiveJournal over my professional commitments.

Finally, most of what I'd probably be blogging about would be how difficult it is dealing with Mom's death and estate issues, and although I know many people reading here are friends, I also know that many of you are here for the discussions of science fiction and writing. I'm also fine with giving you the window into my personal life, but I don't want to bore anyone to tears with it.

(Speaking of which -- at some point, I will continue with discussions of my own personal spiritual journey as well. I just don't have the time right now.)

So, while I continue to be blogging only sporadically, let me share with you one thing I wanted to discuss in more detail. In the months after Mom's death, I've found myself interested in family genealogy, and wanting to trace my roots and find out where I came from.

Well, my mother's mother was from the Boston area, and last Sunday gnomi and I went to the Pride of Boston Cemetery in Woburn and visited the graves of my great-great-grandfather Iudel Sokolovsky (1820/1 - 1906) and my great-grandparents Abraham & Elizabeth Baker (d. 1953 and 1937, respectively). We took a bunch of photos, and if you want to see their monuments, as well as the monuments of some of my great-great-uncles-and-aunts, here's a link to my gallery of Grave Sites. The Hebrew on Iudel's monument tells me that his father was named Dov Ber and was a Levite; so on that side of the family, I've managed to trace back to my great-great-great-grandfather. But there's so much more information I still need to unearth.

And in the meantime, the Nebula Awards are coming up next weekend. Wish me luck.
Tags: jewish, mom, personal, writing

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