Identity

Listening to my Mother is an Act of Learning to Love Myself

  Listening to My Mother is an Act of Learning to Love Myself   When I learned I was pregnant, I was scared because I was the shape of the moon and I didn’t think that my body carried enough light to make the night sky shine.   Whittling a daugther from your flesh feels […]

Honoring a Parent With Whom I’ve Drawn a Boundary

My mom prunes the Mexican Oak tree in my front yard with her bare hands. The tree stands catty-corner to the chain-link fence, standing guard against the neighbor’s driveway. It appears diseased as my mom tirelessly rips off each limb. The branches fall around her like the many stories we hold and can’t quite bring […]

Learning to Love My Body

One thing I do not look forward to about a new year is the hundreds of social media posts where people, and particularly women, commit to getting “healthy” or “fit.” I have nothing against setting goals, and I believe the people who post these are sincere in what they say, but I bet if I […]

Introducing Carolina Hinojosa-Cisneros!

At the beginning of the year I send our monthly contributors an email highlighting the previous year’s stats and ask them to answer a few questions about their ongoing capacity as writers for The Mudroom. Last year was hard for our writers. A few took sabbaticals due to family crises, a couple of us experienced prolonged […]

Longing for Rest

I say a prayer over both kids instead of praying for them individually as I do when I take my time. I rush through my usual night script: “IloveyouDaddylovesyouButwholovesyouthemost?” and they yell back, “God!” My “good night” barely slips through the door I’m already closing behind me, and my whole body sighs. I’m done. I’m […]

Wij Zijn Hier/We Are Here

We are here and you’d like to forget it, have us more hidden then our black faces and tired, old eyes. Isn’t it enough to leave my own country as a teenager? Isn’t it enough to run on bare feet from my home that is at war with itself? Isn’t it enough to be homeless […]

The Paradox of Being an Asian-American Woman Leader

My laugh is a guffaw. It can pierce your ears or shock you if I’m not careful. In church, at Starbucks, anywhere in a crowd, people are unsure of what to make of such a loud laugh coming from me. I’m a 5’2” Korean-American woman in her mid-30s, but most people would probably think I’m […]

When Other People Think Your Kids Are Apples

Today my kids got these . . . I don’t know . . . lip spreaders at church. You know the ones I mean? The plastic thingies that pull your lips away from your gums and make you talk funny like you’re at the dentist? As we walked out of church, my kids start chanting […]

Psalm to Mom

You’re not my own but you read me to bed, and tickles me to the bone love how my fat cheeks dimple up. And I’m barely two and my curls are brand new. And you don’t know what she’s doing,  trying to make my braids, Put your head down, hold your head down, hold it […]