Family

When We All Just Want to Be Known

Fifty of us invaded their driveway on Tuesday night. Card tables and ice chests and camping chairs decorated the pavement, along with stacks of paper plates and plastic silverware and Red Solo cups. The grill sizzled, red and gray coals in wait for chicken apple sausages and hot dogs from the local butcher. We scrawled […]

Porous Hearts and Broken Bits

I don’t remember a lot about that first night they all poured into our third floor walkup other than the fact I was scared. New city. New church. New group of strangers coming to my house. We gathered in my house, but I didn’t lead; I was allowed just to learn. Learn and cook. What […]

No Need to Hide When You Abide

After analysis paralysis, I decided to focus on what makes us hide and why it is safe to come out and be authentic. ****** When he was twelve, a family friend molested him. He never told his parents but for more than decade, he hid his pain through an addiction to pornography and sex. ****** […]

Free to Be Me

It’s been awhile since I’ve experienced it: vulnerability hangover. It’s a term Brene Brown coined for that feeling of, “Did I just share too much? Is she going to think I’m way too much of a mess?” It’s enough to make you throw up a little. But I felt that vulnerability hangover the other morning. […]

Authentic Living is Hard

You know I am from the Midwest because when you ask me how I am, I answer you. This is, as my children’s minister pointed out to me, a trait I have passed on to my girls. Lucky for the Norman girls, she finds us charming. Don’t ask us how we are if you don’t […]

True Confessions of a “Like” oholic

I’ve never smoked crack, shot heroin or drank alcohol, but I have an addiction. Out of nowhere, it snuck up on me. Like the abrupt discovery of a fast-moving cancer, I realized, “Houston, we got a problem.”    I’m a likeoholic and it’s crazy because just 10 years ago I was the woman who didn’t […]

I’m Mentally Ill, but It’s Not My Fault

  I’m meeting Alyssa for the first time. She is a First Access counselor for Behavioral Health and she is facilitating my intake. She calls me in and asks me some questions. The questions are easy and difficult at the same time. I know all the answers, it’s the saying them out loud that is […]

When Loss Messes With Your Faith

We were going to wait seven years before having children. I thought we agreed on five. “No, seven,” my husband insists.Three years into marriage I suddenly developed a ferocious longing for a baby. It took a year to convince my husband and another 12 months to conceive. But the little white pill worked the first […]

Losing Us and Finding Us as Lovers

There is a loss that presses hard on my chest some days, the days when I look out over hills, or a certain slant of light catches me just so, or the way a musty book opened now smells just like the PR and PS books in that old Scottish library and I’m right back […]

Through Seasons of Motherhood

My baby girl will be three in October. She’s into Pixar movies and puzzles and loves singing “Amazing Grace” with her pretend microphone. She’s mostly introverted. She’s already a Type A, and she’s growing more independent every day. She’s becoming a little lady right before my eyes, and it makes me weepy to see how […]

Mourning the Life You Thought You Would Have

When my husband and I got married we moved from Miami, Florida to Wake Forest, North Carolina. We were beyond excited to get out of Miami. I wouldn’t say we hated Miami, I think we were just longing to see what was out there. We wanted to experience a different life from the one we […]

From the Ashes

The last year has perhaps been the most difficult one of my life. Last summer, my husband Andy and I began to seriously discuss abandoning our life plan of forever living among the poor in the slums of India. As we talked, we stood on a rooftop garden overlooking the snowcapped Himalayas and the small […]