In Hawaiian, 'Aloha' means affection, peace, compassion and mercy but it has also become part of the English language meaning 'hello' and 'goodbye'. For me, this Aloha is 'goodbye for now'.
I will be taking a break from blogging but if I have committed to a tour, spotlight, blitz or what have you, I will still get that post up on the blog and promote it. The December Joyathon will still happen.
It's hard for me to type this out at o'dark thirty. This blog has been everything to me. It has allowed me to connect with fellow readers and bloggers. It has given me the chance to meet my personal rockstars: authors. It has also given me some wonderful friendships along the way. Thank you to those who have been here from the beginning and to those who just recently joined me on this blogging journey.
The reason I am taking a step back from blogging is to focus on my family. Particularly my dad. For a few months now, my father has had issues breathing. He would get winded just getting up from the couch and walking a few steps. He met with a cardiologist two days before Thanksgiving and was diagnosed with arrhythmia. His poor heart was beating irregularly and the cardiologist wanted to admit him to the hospital for a procedure that would shock my dad's heart to a regular rhythm. They did that the next day and my father was breathing better. He was able to stand up, walk with the help of a walker, roll himself around on a wheelchair, all without breathing like he had just run a marathon. My mother and I thought he was out of the woods until that night. He flatlined for 18 seconds and that was 18 seconds too long. The cardiologist wanted my dad to get a pacemaker. At first, dad was adamant about not getting one but with a bit of explanation as how the contraption would work, he agreed to get one put in. After all, he had to make it until his 90th birthday (next year). That procedure went well. My dad was suddenly joking with the nurses. It was like he got a new outlook on life after the pacemaker was put in. Plot twist! After the x-ray tech took some x-rays to make sure the pacemaker was put in correctly, the doctors noticed nodules in my dad's lungs. They turned out to be cancer. Benign or malignant, I find out tomorrow. My father has to decide what course of action to take. He's gone through treatment before for cancer in a different part of his body and I'm not sure he wants to go through all that again. I'm not sure if his elderly body can take radiation, chemo or whatever new fangled medicine is available out there to slow the cancer down.
So with a heavy heart, I will be stepping away from blogging for a little while. I'll still be posting reading recommendations on the blog Facebook page, chatting on Twitter, and sharing photos from my life on instagram. I'm not totally going off grid.
So until then...ALOHA.
February 28, 2016 UPDATE: My dad has declined quickly since I wrote the original post. It won't be long now until he leaves this life for a new one. Thank you all for sticking with me and stopping by the blog to check out posts even though I promote them a few days late. I still have quite a few tours, spotlights and giveaways I committed to before all this happened so there will still be posts. I will still be doing the occasional Flash Friday Giveaway post on Facebook so be sure to get notifications of when I post so you don't miss out.
March 20, 2016 UPDATE: My father passed away this month so I have been struggling with the aftermath of it. I know I owe some of you prizes, posts, etc. I am slowly trying to make sure I have posts up on time, reviews written, and prizes sent out. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
In the words of J.K. Rowling and Albus Dumbledore, "After all, to the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure."