A Look Back at the Last Four Years

First of all, titling my posts drive me crazy. I learned to title things as I did here, where words such as “at” and “the” are lower-case, but everything else is upper-case; however, I spent two years as the DC Poetry Examiner for Examiner.com, where the rule is only the first word is capitalized. It has made me a little crazy, I must say. I’m OCD like that. But I digress.

With Obama’s recent inauguration for a second term in office, I have been thinking a bit about my life in the last four years. It seems a bit interesting that Obama won his first term with messages of change and hope, because while politically for Obama I am not sure how much that message has made a difference, I realize that personally for me it has been spot on.

What has happened in the last four years?

  • The first African-American was elected to the U.S. Presidency. From an American history perspective, there may be nothing more significant; however, in present day America, I believe it may be more significant that he is really the first mixed-race President.
  • My family dealt with a cancer scare three years in a row, with three different people (including me) with different results.
  • My wife went from being a stay-at-home mom to working full-time at a dysfunctional workplace to quitting and going back to being at home.
  • My wife and I took the children to Kolkata, India for the first time to meet their extended family. We also went to Nepal — a first for all of us.
  • I went from having no social experience in the world of poetry to finding social media and having a whole lot more of a social experience in poetry than I ever thought possible. Thank you social media, thank you guys.
  • My family left the life it has known for fifteen years and moved to India. Life here is not without its issues, but it’s so much better.
  • I published my children’s adaptation of Beowulf as a children’s book, which I wrote for my son when he was seven.
  • I was elected to the Board of a publishing company, was considered to be Poet Laureate of my city, applied and was accepted as a member of my local arts and humanities commission.
  • An uncle by marriage passed away way too soon; I read his poetry and decided to edit it and publish it posthumously.
  • I founded an organization for poetry advocacy, which is having a hard time getting going, but it’s at least there, with a Board.
  • My wife has gone through a good amount of health issues herself that have never been solved, until perhaps now.
  • I was guest editor for an issue of MiPOesias, a poetry magazine — one of my favorites!

It seems to me my wife Ketaki and I have had our trials, we have had to hope — which includes cancer scares and getting published — and we had to be intentional and committed to change. Our lives did what Obama preached, for good or bad. And there was a lot of it.

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