The middle…

Faith
includes
noticing
the mess,
The emptiness
and discomfort
and letting it
be there
Until some
Light returns

– Ann Lamott

These words speak to a reality in my life these days. Life has shifted in new and uncomfortable ways. We are in the middle, deep in the dark place, before the turn. We left one certainty and have not yet reached the other side. In my favorite books, this is where the hero takes heart and stands firm in the face of insurmountable odds… and presses on to victory. Continue reading “The middle…”

Baby shower…

I didn’t have a baby shower before my first child was born. My family helped me pull together the pieces I would need for a nursery, and I brought my girl home to my mother’s house. I made it through those first days of motherhood surrounded by my mom, dad, and sister. Soon Grandmas were there to help as well. When that baby cried, a whole team responded. Continue reading “Baby shower…”

The real deal…

Tonight we gathered for family dinner. In my imagination, this is a time of bonding and genteel conversation. For a moment this afternoon, I thought maybe we could watch the debate. Maybe discuss national politics with rational, calm voices. Or maybe talk about international issues, or conflict areas. Although I’d love to spend time with the family in my imagination, they did not attend our family dinner. Continue reading “The real deal…”

A clean car…

My friend Kathy is a car girl. She meticulously cares for and maintains her car. Even when the kids were young, she made sure that all the oil changes, tune ups, and tire rotations were scheduled and attended to. Even in the depth of winter, it wasn’t unusual to pull up in front of her house and find her cleaning out the evidence of children in her minivan. Me, not so much. Continue reading “A clean car…”

The creative life…

Years ago, Keith and I took line dancing classes. My steps were tentative, more focused on getting it right, following the directions, and not messing up than anything else. I had to write R and L on the toes of my shoes so that I could end up facing the right direction when I turned. This did not come easily to me. Week after week, I learned new steps and practiced the old. I grew more confident and freer. Every once in a while, I would for a moment lose myself in the music and movement. I forgot my awkwardness and danced. Continue reading “The creative life…”

The day after…

One of my favorite days on the calendar is the day after Christmas. It feels like an exhale. After weeks of busyness and stress leading up to the holiday, the day after allows for a calm contentment. When the kids were small, it was a day filled with the new wonders they found under the tree. Today, it feels like a chance to catch my breath, to reflect, to give thanks. Continue reading “The day after…”

Family traditions…

For my whole life, family has been scattered across the map. As a navy brat we moved. We moved a lot. Dad was stationed in Washington, South Carolina, Hawaii, Scotland, Florida, Bermuda, and Rhode Island, but we are from Oregon. So, we learned to celebrate holidays far from home. The last time we celebrated Christmas all together, my baby boy was only five months old (now he’s 25). We learned growing up that family and holidays are forever. Whether together or apart, we are family and holidays can be celebrated from a distance. Continue reading “Family traditions…”