Getting back in the game after a big time out

Sam getting his running in at the dog park!

I’m back! Yes, it’s been a tad over two months since I wrote a blog post. I have lots of excuses and as of today, none of them much matter. At long last, I feel ready to resume my weekly posting and I’ve even picked up the editing process on my book.

Here’s one explanation for you. Sam, my new dog, arrived in my life on August 5, 2018 and to put it in simple terms, he’s a high maintenance pup. In mid to late September, after taking him to the vet a few times for routine care, it became clear the food I was feeding him wasn’t working. So, even though I don’t eat meat, I started cooking meat and rice with a few veggies for Sam’s tender tummy. Turns out grocery shopping and cooking for a dog takes some serious time and  energy!

Not to mention Sammy’s boundless athletic energy. Bare minimum we walk an hour a day, two 30 minute walks morning and evening. At least two, often three days, we drive the few miles to the off leash 7 acre dog park which he loves, and where he does extensive up and down hill running!

Sleeping, happy Sammy pup

My step average for the past two months is well over 12,000 and almost all those steps are alongside Sam the love dog!! Plus once a week we go to dog training classes at the Animal Humane Society. Turns out Sam’s smart brain needs regular workouts too. As I write this post, I can see Sam fast asleep after our morning at the dog park. He regularly makes me smile.

The big reason I needed a time out from writing wasn’t really all the time investment Sam takes. What rocked my heart, was that I needed to process some family grief. In essence it was like a pair of rose colored glasses got pulled off my face and I realized I am on my own. I have people in the world that I am biologically related to, and many of them are good people. And, the bottom line is that I needed to feel the loss and integrate the reality that I don’t have connections with biological family that includes regular hanging out and supporting one another.

Writing that just now required a very deep breath. And a loving glance over at sleeping Sammy boy. Having a strong connection to an animal reminds me to stay grounded and reminds me that I am connected to people and I do belong. It can be easy to forget that.

I hope YOU also remember that you are connected and you too belong. We are entering the holiday season, which for those of us with non-existent or minimal biological family, this season can hurt. I am so grateful for the amazing, wonderful friends in my life. The near and the far friends who reach out and to whom I reach out for connection. I am also grateful for you, who are taking a moment to read this little blog. Thank you!

In short, I’m back!

See you next week!

With love,


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16 thoughts on “Getting back in the game after a big time out”

  1. Sat Nam Mari!

    Glad you’re back and that you have this new little love in your life. Thank you so much for sharing all aspects of your journey. It is inspiring!

    Siri Karam (Shannon Earthtree)

    • Siri Karam,
      I am profoundly grateful to be connected to you through the internet waves! Sammy is a dear, and he helps every single day. At this moment he’s wondering why we haven’t gone to the dog park yet!!!
      Sat Nam always.

  2. Thank you for your honesty Mari! You are strength, and love….and you fill my heart with joy. All I can say is thank you. Thank you for you. ❤️

  3. Hey Mari, glad to see you back. I understand about taking time out to grieve. We have lost 4 close family members in 18 months. None were unexpected, but it has still taken a toll on our family. Thank goodness we can still clear our heads with some fitness training.

    • Cabe,
      My heart goes out to you. Losing so many people in such a short time is intense. And you are right, fitness training is SO helpful!
      Blessings and love,

  4. Thank you for sharing Mari. I totally understand your need for a break. I have been taking a social media break as I deal with my slow recovery at almost 4 months past knee replacement surgery. By staying focused, I keep my head up.

    Heading into Christmas is hard for me. I really miss my mom. This is our 3rd one without her. I am thankful that my sisters and I get along but extremely grateful for my support network. Both the D’s and church family

    • Cathy,
      So wonderful to hear from you!!! And yes, a social media break now and then is critical for good health – mental and physical!! Sending love to you as you navigate the holiday season without your mom. Yes, our support networks make a HUGE positive difference!
      So much love,

  5. Thank you for sharing. It is a hard thing to do, but I always feel better when I do share. I am VERY fortunate to have a loving, supportive family. However, If this was not the case, I would, like you, distance myself from them. There is no room for negative people in my life. I try to surround myself with positive friends and family. Negativity is in no way healthy. Our disease is hard enough to deal with without getting stressed out by people’s bad attitude. Biological family or friends that are consistently negative have no place in my life. Stay strong!!!

    • Margie,
      Thanks for your support and you better believe it, after cancer twice and diabetes for 38 years, like you, I have no time for negativity!!
      You too stay strong! And, I love knowing there are people who have good families.

  6. Mari
    I always enjoy your communications and work to support us. I too had a major loss this past May. My 30 year old youngest son, a wonderful being, love who had a huge global community of friends and loves left us. He suffered from very difficult mental health disease. So I now know grief as a mother who lost a son. His loss, my, our grief will always be with me but I have been allowing grief to be felt, understood and lived.
    So glad you are back and know that I too understand grief and do recognize that I BELONG, maybe now more than before.
    Peace and love

    • Teri,
      Thanks for telling me a bit of your story. Grief is a difficult emotion and hard to feel it, and I find that when I allow time and space to feel, it moves through with a bit more ease. Blessings to you as you navigate this holiday season.

  7. Hi Mari,
    Welcome back and thank you not only for sharing but being honest. I completely identify with your comments on biological family. I have been learning how my connection to non-bio’s is sometimes stronger than my connection to bio’s, and why that is. I think my non-bio’s accept me for who I am – not who they think I should be.
    Thanks again!
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    • Jennifer,
      It sounds like you get it, and it’s a challenging thing to learn. Thank you for telling me a bit of your story and I wish you well this Thanksgiving too!

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