Here are my TV and movie rules, as I understand them: No lying, at least not sustained lying. It’s okay to fib occasionally, but if someone is “going undercover” or “pretending to be someone they’re not,” I’m done. No fantasy. No sci-fi. Let’s have the universe operate under the known rules, which are already unpredictable, […]
Have you heard the one about Sisyphus and his rock? Me either . . . “Who?” I queried my kids, as it surfaced between Minecraft lore and stupid memes. “The boulder guy,” answered one. “You didn’t learn that in school, either, mom?” followed the other, baffled by my “1900’s” deficiency. So I compensated with indulged […]
My heart sank into my stomach as I stared at the familiar face on my computer screen. Her eyebrows lifted, likely wondering if my feed had frozen again. But my internet connection was working fine. I forced myself to take a deep breath as the word my therapist, Callie, had just spoken echoed in the […]
Do You Want to Get Well?
Regardless of our personalities, faith, politics, demographics, race, or social standing, one thing we do have in common is that we all need healing. Over the course of our lives, every one of us will need physical or psychological healing at some point. Healing has been a constant theme in my own life beginning in […]
A Look at the Last EIGHT Years!
Happy Birthday, Mudroom! Today marks the 8th birthday of The Mudroom, which came into being in my mind in 2014. I was part of the now-defunct Influence Network, founded by Zondervan authors Jess Connolly and Hayley Morgan, who believed in my vision and sponsored our domain the first year. I wanted it to be a […]
Episode 11: How Our Longing Lead Us Home With Tammy Perlmutter
Our guest at The Mudroom today is Tammy Perlmutter, Founder and Curator of this space, and—among so many other things–our resident expert on longing. Tammy’s journey is a mixture of heartbreak and hope—including childhood abuse—so we want to issue a trigger warning here. But, as Tammy expresses here, there is also God’s beautiful redemption arc—and for her, […]
Why I Quit Church
It’s been two years since I quit the table— and the pew; since I’ve pinched the broken piece of bread between my fingers and dipped it in the crimson cup. The body and blood of Jesus, given for me . . . and promptly declined. At first, it wasn’t on purpose. (There was a global […]
Post-Reflections on the Buffalo, New York Shooting Massacre
Discerning the Content of my Heart As a little girl, the Walnut Park Fred Meyer’s felt more like church or a mini family reunion rather than a grocery store. Centered at the heart of our small Black community—laughter, joy and service stocked shelves and overstuffed aisles. I witnessed the practice of unconditional love and collective […]
Opening to a New Way to Bloom
Early in the healing process of a severe manic episode related to my bipolar disorder, I felt the nudge and a voice I believed to be God’s. I heard, “I want you to share your story. This story you are living now.” The only emotion I felt was terror. I quaked in my sneakers as […]
Space for Transformation
The world is such an odd place these days. But as I write, I realize I have always thought it to be. However there was rhythm and routine to my days. A certain flow and consistency to my life. Just a few short years ago, there was measure of assurance or at least perceived assurance. […]
Obey: a Four-Letter-Word
OBEY. It’s a four-letter word—at least, that’s how I think of it. I associate this word with punishment, negative emotions, consequences, rigidity, and legalism. The word itself makes me cringe at times. It feels autocratic and one-sided, as in a command that also means, “Do what I say.” The word itself feels cold and authoritative. […]
My mom has a particular story about me that she likes to tell: As she was doing dishes in our kitchen, she looked out the window and saw me in the backyard trying to catch frogs and kiss them. While it’s rather cute to think of a porcelain-white toddler with black curls and thick baby […]
Mindful of mental wellness and practicing self-care, I sought solace for my soul. I am overwhelmed. I am weary and seek to manage my anger and disappointment. My practice? Staying mostly quiet, writing, and stealing joy.
Why I Don’t Want My Daughter to Be My Best Friend
Searching my university library’s database, I come across an article associating enmeshment—that what a lack of boundaries with my kids is called—with adolescent depression.
Deeper Still: Mental Illness and Love’s Long Reach
God’s angels held back the car as Rose intentionally ran in front of it. I grabbed my little girl, held her, and began weeping. Why would a child try to kill herself? Why does God allow such brokenness? The air froze in my lungs as Rose told the doctor that she wanted to die and […]
Another Thorn, Another Rose (Mental Illness as a Blessing)
I fight against harm perpetrated both by the myth of the Strong Black Woman and the stigma my culture attaches to mental illness every day. Since 1619, America nurtures me to mute my emotions, my pain, and my fear.
I’ve had my share of youthful indiscretions. (Mom, please exit here and look at some of my baby pictures instead.) Not least among these was that time in college when my roommate Marie and I finished finals early. The cumulative stress from the completed semester was palpable. So we let loose like any other restless […]
5 Ways to Make it through Covid-19 Still Married
It’s easy to neglect our spouses during the crazy that is COVID-19. Join Ashley Hales as she suggests 5 ways to stay married. They’re gentle reminders to lovingly tend and care for your spouse and marriage.