Getting my second wind

Learning from burnout, allowing myself to be inspired, and finding joy. Twenty years with the same company and at the height of my career, I suddenly found myself uninspired. I genuinely loved my colleagues and the people I served, but I struggled to find the joy in my day to day.  While I knew there […]

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i wanted to miss him

At the intersection, there was a couple. Their clothes looked clean and they spoke to one another gently. Had I seen them anywhere else, they might have looked like a typical couple on a summer’s day. But under the bridge by the stoplight, a different story emerged. She drank from a plastic bottle, water I […]

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it’s not about gardening

I don’t know anything about birds.  But there are some mornings, especially in late winter and early spring, when I will go out on the front porch, cup of hot coffee in hand, and sit for long periods of time listening to the sound of the occasional passing car and the songs of birds.  So […]

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Learning to fly (tentative title)

I was 32 when my husband and I separated.  I had three small children, ages 5, 3, and 1. I’m not going to lie – “hard” doesn’t even come close to describing what it was like, and there were times when I thought the pain would kill me.  Once or twice, I found myself crumpled […]

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International Women’s Day is about my mom, too.

March 8th is International Women’s Day. Below is an excerpt from the book I am working on, a memoir of sorts that will, among other things, celebrate my mother’s incredible strength. She sat in her car, hands gripping the steering wheel.  She was so proud of herself for driving over here. She had been thinking […]

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The Joy of Home

Maria met us at the back gate. She wore a sheer purple tunic over her bathing suit and in her hand was a glass with what looked like coca cola in it. The midafternoon heat was sweltering, and a cold soft drink sounded amazing, but she didn’t offer and I didn’t ask. We shook hands, […]

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the only way out is through

It was early May, and I was in the car on the way home from work.  When you work in a school, May is perhaps one of the busiest times of year, and it is also a time of celebration.  May means final exams, yes. But it also means prom, awards ceremonies, and graduation. As […]

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There is no forgiveness, only acceptance.

We were in the car, on the way to Marco’s weekly golf lesson, and Marco was telling me about an incident that had happened at school.  It seems he and another boy had a dispute with two girls during recess.  The other boy and one of the girls got angry enough that the dispute got […]

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Commencement speech given for a special young man in June 2013

Note:  This is a graduation speech that I was asked to give in June 2013 for a one-man graduating class.   I have realized that it’s actually harder to write for other people than it is to write for myself, but it’s infinitely more gratifying. Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, parents, students, Louise, Dani, and guests.  […]

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Inspiration from others, 2

From The hand that first held mine, by Maggie O’Farrell The women we become after children. We change shape, we buy low-heeled shoes, we cut off our long hair.  We begin to carry in our bags half-eaten rusks, a small tractor, a shred of beloved fabric, a plastic doll.  We lose muscle tone, sleep, reason, […]

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