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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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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Ode to Nacho

As parents, we go through stages with our children that depend both on where they are in their development, and on where we stand with our own levels of patience, emotion, and energy.   How much we love our children is the unshakeable foundation that brings us back, even after we’ve already threatened to disown the […]

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Leaping

“Perdóneme señorita, pero le puedo hacer una pregunta?” Excuse me miss, but may I ask you a question? I was in line at a little bakery just around the corner from the church, waiting to pay for my coffee and croissant. It’s a tiny place, but it is the only one in the neighborhood that […]

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the phone call

I am not sure when it was exactly that my dad decided his time on earth was up, but long before his body grew tired, and even longer before his mind hinted at exhaustion, he made the decision that he had done enough. Maybe it was when he turned 55.  His own father had died […]

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Building reserves

If you’ve read “lessons from Emma” you already know that Emma is a special young lady with tremendous character.  For the last couple of years, I have watched as Emma, now in fourth grade, begins to shed the layers of little girl, making room for the young woman that is taking root inside.   There are […]

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shining star

My brother, J, died in the month of September, almost a full moon after his 42nd birthday.  He wasn’t ready to go, but he also knew that that was no longer up to him.  He understood that his time was approaching quickly, and it was important to him to have his family around, even if […]

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on becoming a parent

This week I became a parent.  I have three children and three stepchildren, but it wasn’t actually until one of them became a typical teenager that I entered parenthood.  Everything up to now was just nurturing.  Nurturing is soothing their aches and sores, making them chicken soup when they are sick, buying them shampoo and […]

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a place to belong

I was baptized when I was 26.  I was looking for something, and I thought I would find it in the Church. I was in a taxi going through Harlem on the way to the airport after spending a few days with a friend, and I remember seeing an abandoned cinema.  There was something in […]

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when you know she’s the one

It is strange to me when Marco asks if Daddy ever lived with us. And I have to remind myself that Daddy moved out when Marco was 1. Granted, he was just a few months away from his second birthday, but he was, in fact, only 1. And he is amazed to think that I […]

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