Keeping It…REAL – No matter how any of us try to be perfect – that’s not happening. Neither people – or marriages are born to be perfect. Sure, we may WANT perfect, the ideal — but  REAL is what we get.

Marriage is rarely a Hallmark movie or 24/7 euphoria. Instead, authentic marriage means sacrifice, issues, chores, schedules, love, irritation, thoughtfulness, forgiveness, anger, affection (not always in that order). It’s also idiocyncrasies, snoring, worries, richer and poorer. When critical illness and its side effects enters the mix, now that really transforms the playing field. One partner undergoes endless procedures/surgeries, diminished quality of life, anger, pain and fear. The other juggles worry, research, is the keeper of the medical records, and caretaker extraordinaire. That was our  marriage; that was our REAL.

I’ve poured my heart out these past months, writing about deep grief, and the missing of a husband I loved beyond words. It came to me recently, that the painting was incomplete. It was in black and white with pieces missing. While stark pen and ink art has always been my forte, when it comes to portraying a real picture of real marriage, black and white doesn’t cut it.  Grief outlined only in high contrast is pretty flawed and does a disservice to the flavors and colorations a real marriage holds. Continue reading

Like a Boss

partnership“May I speak to your public relations partner?” Um, what? First call of the day and I wasn’t prepared for someone to ask for my husband.  “What can I help you with?” I said. They told me they had an urgent need for an experienced PR Counsel to write press releases for trade journals.

In another time, a call like that would have been just the ticket. Anyone who has their own business totally gets it. We are ALWAYS doing new business and always glad for a new client. This one sounded like he was smack in the middle of my PR dude’s wheelhouse. Only one problem – HE’S no longer in the wheel house.

The unsuspecting prospective client had no idea. How could he know that the agency partnership — is missing a partner? Actually,  for a second, I almost forgot myself (is that even possible?) I wanted to call that guy who had been a Senior VP and PR counsel. The one who was a natural newsman, had major recognizable clients in his PR portfolio, including The Miss Universe Pageant, and could write press releases in his sleep. But he can’t write them now…or ever again.

I write mean ad copy. I’ve done award-winning graphic design. But I can’t pitch a story to the media and I’m far too warm and fuzzy for a straight-forward, nothing but the facts press release. I always went by a mentor’s advice – ‘say yes — and figure it out later’ but I don’t have the energy right now. Even if I wanted to take a stab at it, I  don’t bring my husband’s crazy backpack of experience to the table, his gift for making someone feel he was laser focused on them.

There was no new business today. I don’t much care. The ‘ship’ in partnership is adrift.