Great Expectations & Granted Permission

Expectations speak to desired outcomes like: trust, belief, safety, possibility, anticipation or, looking forward. They’re sometimes an assumption, but often they’re deeply rooted longings bolstered by the faith that something petitioned for or desperately needed will come to fruition.  What are your great expectations?  I asked myself, “what do I desire to create or achieve with this year that’s […]

Grace, Hearts and Coming Out of the Dark

Nocturnal Panic Attacks False Awakenings Lucid Dreaming They’re all genuine and can make you believe you’re physically dying. The illusion of waking up even though you’re still asleep involves experiences that seem completely real. Eventually, you often become cognizant that you’re actually in a dream, one foot in the tangible world, the other in an altered state. […]

The Day After Christmas

On this day after Christmas, the house is silent—too quiet, honestly—with only Vero (our empathic little rescue dog) and me sitting in the library as the heater whirs on, staving off the winter that won’t officially end until March 20th.  The past two days were a whirlwind—leaving our home for church on Christmas Eve with […]

Two Days Before Christmas & The Perfect Tree

Stories about Christmas abound. Some of them are filled with the sadness of missing a loved one. Others recall times, when we were far from home or Christmas didn’t play out the way we painted it in our idyllic imaginations. Mostly, however, the stories we share are the happiest ones. This is one of those […]

Fragility

Life’s fragility—much too fleeting or painstakingly stagnant, joyfully overflowing or devastatingly lonely—plays out in this space between human life and death. Sometimes, lines have been rehearsed for decades; often, we’re caught off guard, blindsided by the swiftness of change that was never expected or invited.   We can be like shooting stars—tiny specs of dust glowing […]

Perfect Imperfect

A few years ago, as I sat writing at my desk before the sun rose, I inaudibly heard “look up” and saw that sections of the library’s cathedral ceiling were, falling! My first step was emptying the room. Art, photos, gifts, precious mementos from my daughters and grandchildren, and hundreds of books (yep, I counted […]

Texas 5/24/22

Texas’ name is derived from “thecas,” which means friends and allies. In that state, a town named Uvalde—the “Honey Capital of the World”—is in mourning. Many of us cry with her in grief and sorrow. This place that now, and perhaps for many decades to come, will not feel safety or the sweetness of honey. […]

Happiness

Yesterday morning, birds patiently took turns at the feeder. Signs of Spring sprouted up through the snow-covered ground, reaching for the sun. I experienced feeling “happy” as I watched them. Unlike dessert or a perfectly aged cabernet, happiness is life-giving water needed for optimal survival. But, for many, bliss seems unattainable. Perhaps you think, “How dare I […]

Valentines & Aortas

It’s widely held that Valentine’s Day honors a priest named Saint Valentine of Terni, who lived in third-century Rome. In one of the research articles I read, Valentine was killed for performing weddings for soldiers forbidden to marry while in service. Another story relates that the imprisoned Saint Valentine sent a letter to a young […]

Forgetting to Remember, Remembering to Forget

I often say, “I forgot to remember.” Years ago, remembering wasn’t a problem, but with damage to one minuscule nerve, being able to simultaneously process all the things I want simply isn’t as easy as it used to be. So, instead of saying, “I forgot,” I say, “I forgot to remember.” It’s kinder and gentler. […]

A Different Perspective

Pain is real. I don’t know even one adult who has not experienced some heartache during this lifetime. Yet, hope continues to loom—even in the dark, even when we don’t acknowledge it—perhaps especially when we don’t acknowledge it. It’s sometimes easier to assign negativity and sorrow to our lives than it is to embrace each diamond […]

Thanksgiving Blessings

Last night, I went to bed hungry. It was by choice, not by necessity. There were moments while lying in the darkened room that I thought about getting up, going into the kitchen, opening a pantry or refrigerator door, and choosing something to eat. But I didn’t. Instead, I thought about the 800 million people on our […]

Buddha Wisdom

I recently did some research on Siddhartha Gautama, often simply called, The Buddha. I’m not very familiar with Buddhism, but a conversation with someone important to me regarding whether the human experience requires significant (maybe continual) suffering. created the desire to learn more.  Gautama was raised in a life of wealth but left opulence behind […]

Expansiveness

Tears—big, fat tears, the kind that makes some men uncomfortable, and many women sigh—rolled down his cheeks. He laid on a hospital bed, his life nearing the end, spending precious moments with the daughter who sat next to him—this daughter who wasn’t his and was always his. He was only in his sixties. He talked about his beloved wife. […]

Love

Love: a noun or a verb; its etymology dates back to the 1800s “lufu” or “leubh”— desire or care. At church on Sunday, Jo talked about “love.” That simple word conjures up all kinds of feelings because we employ it to explain experiences as varied as the emotions of star-gazing lovers or buying a new […]

Tuesday Morning (5:20 am)

It’s 5:20 on a Tuesday morning. I tossed and turned for a while before recognizing that I wasn’t going to quiet my brain—that’s decided to run a marathon—so I got up. The air outside is still, almost too still. I sit at my desk with my tea and type away as if the world’s on […]

What Matters Most

When my granddaughter, Lauren, was ten, she read a story to me about a family with three young children that survived the devastating Joplin, Missouri tornado of 2011. I’m sure that life has never been quite the same for them. The recognition of “what they could have lost” probably still dances through their minds every […]

Too Much?

Like most, or at least many, of the humans I know, I’ve had my fair share of pain in this life. In my three-pound brain, there are times when I feel as if I’ve experienced too much sorrow, but “too much” is incredibly nebulous. What is “too much?” Who measures that? Is there a yardstick […]

A Matter of Life or Death

My brother, Bob, diagnosed with his first brain tumor at sixteen, died when he was forty. He beat insurmountable odds. In the last years of his life, he was wheelchair-bound, and his brain lived in the past. Incredibly, through all the surgeries and pain, he never once complained or uttered, “why me?” A life that blessed many […]

Feeding the Wolf of Love

There’s a Native American legend about two wolves. As the story goes, we have two wolves inside our hearts: a wolf of love and a wolf of hate. The wolf of hate is filled with anger, sorrow, ego, fear, pride, envy, arrogance, greed, and superiority. The heart of the wolf of love overflows with hope, humility, […]

Mourning Losses/Morning Losses

One early morning, I sat at my desk, a notebook in front of me, a stack of books on my left, and big, hot tears running down my face. I was thinking about how fast the decades have flown by, aware of how our perception of time changes as we age. Years ago, my granddaughter […]

Life and Awareness

IIn the winter, when I was very young, I would curl up, as small as I could, next to the bathtub as it filled with water. There wasn’t yet central heat in our home, and the little bathroom was a room without that luxury. The house was heated by coal delivered down a chute and […]

Tree People

This idea started with a simple concept: “Love songs aren’t just for others. Love songs are for you too.” But, as I thought about the number of people who don’t truly experience love or struggle with trusting love, I realized that, for many, it’s often really tough just to get to the place of self-love. Sadly, some […]

I love you, but….

When my grandson Ethan was young, a friend gave him the book, “How Do Dinosaurs Say I Love You?”. It’s about dinosaurs (children) who do all sorts of kid-like things that make parents frazzled, but then turn around and do something sweet that touches their hearts. The last sentence in the book is “…that’s when […]

Two Short Poems on Hope & Love

For those who feel despair and those who offer hope;  for those who are scared and those who show love, and for those who are lost and those who guide the way, these poems are for you. FINDING HOPE worlds collide the past and the present slamming into each other— painfully, without regard for the […]