The Doctor is IN

Keen Observations on Life … Whether You Need Them or Not


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Three-Cubed

Today Mr. Sickles and I are celebrating our 27th anniversary. He’s the WALL-E to my Eve. The Wesley to my Buttercup. The Jack Colton to my Joan Wilder.

That’s 3x3x3. Three-cubed. The Trinity of Trinities. We are the atomic number of cobalt. 27% of the universe is dark matter. The width of a tennis court is 27 feet wide. There are 27 cubes in a Rubik’s cube. Uranus has 27 moons. The Twenty-Seven club includes some of the greatest musicians, including Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, and Jimi Hendrix. Eddie Izzard ran 27 marathons in 27 days. Mozart was born on January 27 and produced 27 piano concertos and 27 concert arias. 27 is the only positive integer that’s three times the sum of its digits … like my family. We are the sum of our members, and we Sickles Three are mighty thankful for our health, happiness, and optimism.

Twenty-seven is a big deal. I’m proud of us!

___________________

Photo: Peyton Sickles


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Ministry of Love and Happiness

I got ordained as a minister in 2017 as a backup for my friends Patrick and Tony, whose minister (and aunt) broke her leg days before their wedding. Fortunately, Patrick’s sister was able to fill the role, and I shelved my ministerial credentials and hopes and waited for the right friend to need them. Last weekend it happened, y’all: I performed the marriage of my great friend Cynthia and her new husband, Tim. I was nervous because there was a real McCoy priest in the family and in attendance, but as soon as I stood next to Tim on the beach, where he waited for his beloved to join him, I was calm. I’m never worried about the conversation of love and happiness, because I’m both a writer and a romance author … I just needed to get past the nerves.

Like Ringo Starr, Dennis Leary, and Debbie Reynolds, I’m ordained through the Universal Life Church. I don’t know what they’re qualified for, but I do it all but christenings and exorcisms — I’m not messing with anybody’s religion because who needs that zap to the karma — I’m as good as any captain of the sea. So, argh!, HMU if you need a wedding minister. 😉


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Sharing the spotlight with my favorite son

I have the great honor of sharing the spotlight with my favorite (and only) son Peyton today as we’re highlighted through the Chatham Arts Council’s Meet the Artist series. I thought Rachel Flanagan did a great job; the whole process was enjoyable. The arts have been hit hard during this coronavirus quarantining, so shout out to all arts patrons who have helped keep the lights on with arts orgs, and who’ve helped artists pay the bills. I’ve been around the block, but my young, emerging artist is just starting out and his steady work during this period has a hopeful vibe for this proud mother, artist, and arts patron. Seek out local artists and arts organizations and see how you might help support them — not all support has to be financial, either. Boost the signal of their work, send kind words of support, share their contact information with potential patrons and clients. The arts are incredibly important, and through organizations like the Chatham Arts Council, and Hobbs Architects in downtown Pittsboro (who sponsor the Meet the Artist series), there continues to be an audience.

I’m always happy for folks to check out my kid lit stuff and my romance stuff, but I really hope you’ll check out the links for Peyton. He’s an amazing photographer, and a true emerging artist. And if you happen to need portraits, event coverage, a photojournalist, or film development, hit him up.

Peyton Sickles


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Early Voting Starts Today

Whether you vote on November 3, by absentee ballot, or by one-stop early voting–even if you and I cancel each other out at the poll–you need to VOTE. In North Carolina, early voting starts today (October 15) and runs through October 31. Check out the North Carolina State Board of Elections for information regarding where you can vote early, if that’s your jam.

Since I didn’t raise a lemming, and our son is awake, aware, and active, I thought I’d share a couple photos he captured over the last few months for WUNC of Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Amy Klobuchar; the 2020 Raleigh Women’s March, and moments from the Raleigh protests in May and in August. Vote for what’s happening in the world. Vote for what you want the future to look like. Vote your conscience. Vote because it’s your right, and your privilege. Just vote.

 


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The Decade at a Glance

I am nothing if not an optimist. It’s been a crazy year, but a good one, and as we come to the start of a fresh new year and a fresh new decade, I’ve been reminiscing over the last ten years. They were pretty great, actually. There have been some doozies: I stopped working full-time so I could pursue life as an author; I survived and fought my way back from a life-altering traumatic brain injury; we experienced the death of a close friend, which encouraged us to give in to our wanderlust and stop waiting for the perfect time to travel and see the world. There have been highs and lows, excitement and boredom, happiness and love. In fact, this last decade has been my most creative, most productive yet. Since January 1, 2010, I have:

And best yet: I’m still in my mid-40s!

So a little advice: say Y.E.S. when someone asks you to experience or do something new. Take a leap of faith. Believe in yourself. Save for a vacation – you can do it. Nobody needs to eat several lunches or dinners out each week. Pack a lunch and cook at home. Put priority on your happiness, and enrich your hearts and minds with family and friends. Learn a new language. Take piano lessons. Plant a victory garden. Make a new friend. Volunteer at your local food bank or homeless shelter. Be the best YOU you can be. Think positively: this is going to be a great decade!


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Well, another summer in the books … which means it’s time to go back to college

I made it through another college departure, as our son headed off for his junior year after dinner.  And I didn’t even cry in front of him. much. We did it, I remind myself, as my emotions run the gamut from heartbroken to overjoyed … because all of our hoping, dreaming, planning, and saving have made it possible for him to return for another year to university, to pursue the things that most interest him, and will help build the man he is to become. But I’m sad … now it’s just me and Steve. Well, and my husband (who’s way better than Steve). Summertime is the best because we get in so much adventuring and dreaming and all the stuff. Sigh. Good luck to all the college-bound kids out there, and good luck to all their parents. You did it, even though it breaks your heart to know the future is just that much closer. If I close my eyes, I can still feel his little heart beat against my chest.

We adventured in Colorado this summer.