Ave Atque Vale, Chicago Now

Ave Atque Vale, Chicago Now

If you’ve been reading this Chicago Now blog for some time, you’ve noticed that I haven’t posted since January. There’s a story behind why I’ve been absent, and why I’m moving on.

In February, as my mother’s caregiver, I witnessed her experiencing so much pain that she was bedridden. Initially hospitalized, she was then referred to various facilities. She finally passed in April, a few days before Easter Sunday. Since then, I’ve been dealing with grief, adjusting to a “new normal“, and engaging with appropriate external resources to deal with the anxiety and depression that come with grieving a loved one.

My mother (c 2010)

(The other major factor is that, around the same time, I started a six-month contract position. As a freelance marketing consultant, it helped that I had a job that provided focus and structure during this period. Although that contract ended recently, I am extremely grateful that my colleagues and teammates were very understanding. Thanks to that position and judicious savings, I’m in a good position to seek work while I’m grieving).

However, the other issue is that I’ve heard through informal channels that Chicago Now, as a platform, will be folding. Back in 2019, the Alden Group purchased the Chicago Tribune, with Chicago Now in relative limbo. As someone who has blogged for the platform since 2012 (starting with Stalker), there’s a slight sense of melancholy about this folding, especially since…

I need to say this with some diplomacy and tact, but I’m feeling less connected with the community of Chicago Now bloggers. Over the past few years (especially since COVID), my experience has moved from feeling like I’m part of a healthy, lively community to feeling disconnected and out of place. Short example: I asked for advice on a technical matter only to be lectured about how I “shouldn’t” rely on it by a person whom I did not know. When I asked again a few months later – to a person who might have that information – I was informed that they “didn’t know.”

A great resource on handling grief

But this isn’t about snarking – it’s about the future. As someone who is both a professional copywriter and a New Pulp author, I want to streamline both efforts. That means working through the emotional aftermath of grief (I highly recommend reading It’s OK That You’re Not OK (non-affiliate link) to those who are grieving and friends/family of such people) as well as moving away and focusing my efforts on those goals.

Part of that will be exporting and archiving this blog onto another WordPress site (work is going slowly, but surely). Much of my current blogging focus will be providing both patron-only and public content on my Patreon site. (If you want to support a creator financially, you’re more than welcome to subscribe on either a monthly or yearly basis). But for now, I’m focusing on moving forward in recovering from grief. You are always welcome to email me with questions, concerns, or thoughts.

I have no idea how to end this blog post in an articulate manner. After all, Chicago Now has been a large, critical part of my writing career. However, I think this speech from one of my favorite television shows sums it up better than I could:

Ave atque vale, Chicago Now. It’s been a blast.

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Gordon Dymowski

As a professional, I’ve worked with – and admire – nonprofits, social enterprise, and other mission-driven community organizations. I enjoy learning about how many organizations are using technology and social networks to drive their mission. I also enjoy writing about them, and sharing that information with others. For more about me, please visit http://www.gordondymowski.com

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