I Never Wanted to be Like My Mother

I never wanted to be like my mother. My mother stayed for more than 40 years in a marriage that broke her heart.  She admits now that she was afraid. She married in the late fifties, when women couldn’t even have a bank account in their name.  She was a teacher and worked to put … Continue reading I Never Wanted to be Like My Mother

(I am) Under Construction: I Believe in the God who keeps time and has a long view that I cannot comprehend

I am grieving my father’s absence today. I miss him terribly. (This is true, even while it is also true that I was afraid of him all my life.)  He was my father and I loved him.  He was wise and could be gentle and kind. Yesterday while reflecting on where I have come from, I … Continue reading (I am) Under Construction: I Believe in the God who keeps time and has a long view that I cannot comprehend

Were I to forgive you, Daddy … [A tale of domestic abuse, Part 2]

I just posted a piece on domestic abuse.  This is a tiny bit of my personal story that I wrote several years ago. The stupid neither forgive nor forget; the naive forgive and forget; the wise forgive, but do not forget.  — Thomas  S. Szasz First published in March 2010.  This was not easy to … Continue reading Were I to forgive you, Daddy … [A tale of domestic abuse, Part 2]

Do You Trust God? (A response to Blackhawk’s sermon “Stop”)

BE REAL. One of the ways I’m going to do that – be real — is to write a response to the sermons I hear at my church, Blackhawk. These responses are not from the church, just my reflections.  I am always challenged by teachers at Blackhawk, sometimes profoundly, but I don’t — to be honest — always take the time needed … Continue reading Do You Trust God? (A response to Blackhawk’s sermon “Stop”)

it’s 4:59 am, and you disintegrated slowly [A Poem]

Daddy, I miss you. I really do!  I try not to, because I think I am still mad at you. I’ve got a nice fat file at the UW Department of Psychiatry to prove it. I glanced at the back of the room and saw you sitting there.  With your grin, how I lived to … Continue reading it’s 4:59 am, and you disintegrated slowly [A Poem]

forgiveness: expect miracles

“Everyone says that forgiveness is a lovely idea until they have something to forgive.” – CS Lewis Forgiveness of grave acts of injustice can feel like an abstract concept to those who have not experienced those acts. ( — PRISM magazine) Sometimes I write, telling parts of my story, in order take what is anything but … Continue reading forgiveness: expect miracles

A Sacred Contract [a poem]

Tonya (8), Melody (10), Holly (3) and Paula (12) with Dan Harrison in southern California, 1976. SISTERS: A Sacred Contract A sacred contract between sisters; My secrets are yours, yours are mine, And theirs are ours together. Four sisters. Bound to one another by secrets. ‘You don’t owe each other,’ my husband said. Oh, but … Continue reading A Sacred Contract [a poem]

Happy Birthday to Me: A Look Back. And A Book Release.

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I’m forty-eight today. Surreal. We will not celebrate for various reasons, none of which are as morbid as you’re imagining.  It is: no wish to celebrate (yes, I told Tom not to do anything) and being a little broke. I’m content. Instead of writing my annual birthday post, I’ve listed all the essays and poetry I wrote … Continue reading Happy Birthday to Me: A Look Back. And A Book Release.

Life is not Pass or Fail: A Mother’s Day Remembrance

I have always seen “weakness” as a defect and here on this blog I say a lot about what I consider to be my own weaknesses – the narrative playing in my head and here on these pages for years has been a fear that I am too broken and weak to be useful at all. … Continue reading Life is not Pass or Fail: A Mother’s Day Remembrance