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Being a Mother and Writer
Heather at Tree House in Chicago

Just back from Chicago, where I helped Heather move from her Evanston apartment to her new job in Springfield, Illinois. This is the big move from student to working woman--she has been hired as an editor on the Springfield newspaper.  It's hard for her--a writer and a musician/percussionist--to move from a lively pro-arts town to a smaller, more economically depressed city.   But it's a job that keeps her in the newspaper business, and it pays reasonably well. She was able to rent a three-story house with one floor designated as the "music room."  That's where the marimba is now housed.  The retired cop who lives next door plays the bagpipes--he's a former Northwestern University graduate as well (in English literature!)  She can't have a cat, though, which breaks her heart.  She had wanted to rescue one of her adored kitties from Tree House, the no-kill shelter in Chicago (she volunteered there once a week).  That adoption will have to wait until she owns her own place.

I couldn't be more proud of her!  That said, I'm exhausted.  I taught my graduate class in a fog today.   The undergrads are opening up, writing their sorrows--which is pretty amazing for the second week of  classes!  The grad students are more gripped with fear, I think.  Too much is riding on their work, the evaluations.   They are being very careful and composed.  That will change. (We want wild and composed!)

Heather called tonight to say that she would be okay.  That's what a mother wants to hear! 

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This is a big milestone my family is marking too. Our oldest graduated in May and started her new job yesterday. I suspect both our daughters are used to working hard every Sept - May. The challenge will come next May - "Wait, you mean I don't get the next 3 months off?!"

Good luck.


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Thanks for your responsiveness!


   Thanks for your kind response.   Congratulations on your daughter's graduation, and good luck to her as well.  Heather has already complained about not having consistent days off. You're right about summers!

    You and your daughter might like The Movable Nest: A Mother/Daughter Companion; Kay Byer and I edited that one to help us with separation issues when our daughters left home.   The goings and comings are tough.  But here we are at these milestones.  Celebrate!  Our girls are making their way in the world--

     All cheers to you and your work, Marilyn 

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Congratulations to you AND Heather!!!  What an amazing step.  I'm very happy for your family on this.  It's funny, but it seems like just yesterday that you and I met in Hodges at the Starbucks and you were stressing about where she would go to college.  LOL!  And now she's all grown up and on her own.  Time passes.  I hope she finds this job to be spectular for her.  Go ahead and be a proud mom!

 Best, Scott

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You are so kind, Scott!

I take your words to heart--thank you!  M


PS.  We do have a slot for Southern Festival, Saturday morning, the 11th, 11:30.    Alice Friman is reading with us--she's a first rate poet.

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 It must be quite a tug for you. But it's the young folks who have nerve to spare, plus all that lovely energy.

I can relate,if only tangentially. My 22 year old nephew lit out for Vegas last week. At least he didn't run away and join the circus,  heh.




Cheryl Snell www.shivasarms.blogspot.com

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My daughter trained me well.

Cheryl, Thanks for your responsiveness.  Heather went away to music school at 16--that just about killed me, at first.   I wrote a book about that, with my friend Kathryn Stripling Byer--The Movable Nest: A Mother/Daughter Companion.  Writing helps.  And this daughter of mine is very poised and talented.   (She still needs her mom though. We talk every day.  Thank God for cell phones!)

Tell Krishna the new math-bio center at UT has been announced and he might be interested to read about it.   It's called Nimbios.

All cheers to you and your family--good luck to that adventuresome nephew! Marilyn 

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Krishna says

 Congrats! We just looked up Nimbios--quite an accomplishment.

I just put Krishna's info up at the Math Geneaology Project and saw that your husband is a student of Simon Levin! He's coming to DC in October to give a Carnegie Institution lecture. Small world...

Cheryl Snell www.shivasarms.blogspot.com

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I told Lou about Krishna and Simon Levin

Small world indeed!  Simon Levin was Lou's teacher at Cornell, and gave him such a great start.   

All cheers to you and K!  We'll look him up at the Math Genealogy Project--Marilyn