Thoughts on Misplacing Life’s Instruction Manual. Yesterday I organized a closet that needed cleaning years ago. A cluttered cabinet was repurposed to stack boxes of games hoarded over the decades when I raised four children in a now empty nest. It’s difficult to let go of these treasures: Scattergories, Stratego, Don’t Wake Up […]
Recently I began the practice of handwriting verses in calligraphy. Fingers grasped around a pen, slow movement forms each letter, each word, each phrase. This intentional placement on a vellum page brings me peace and focus. Ink outlines the meaning of each line, causing me to ponder….why did the author choose this word? What meaning […]
A Few Simple Words
A recent Twitter thread asked for folks to respond with six words that could change the world (with the hashtag #6wordworldchange). People responded with statements such as: “Help me understand what you mean.” “This is hard. I need help.” “I believe you. I’ll help you.” “I was wrong. Please forgive me.” “You have something to […]
True (Ghost) Stories
Dear Reader, There are those songs we all have in our heads . . . Some come and go. Others settle in for a season. Then there are the few that linger the longest—part of ghosts from the past, perhaps, that we can’t quite shake. This month’s theme, the virtue of simplicity, conjured up a […]
In the Dirt
“Why don’t you try listening first?” my kids asked. Ouch. Those words struck and halted me in my tracks. I had retorted a response too soon, and immediately felt that pain in the pit of my stomach and a wave of regret. Have you been there, too? Spoken words too quickly and wish you had […]
Do You See Me?
Do you see me Lord? I feel alone and forgotten at times. Misunderstood. Invisible. The world continues its rotation spinning, spinning even faster these days. A whirling top that will surely tumble. Am I just a speck on this twirling planet? Do you really see me from above? Your word […]
Meet Prasanta Verma
Hello, I’m Prasanta. I’m a writer, poet, artist, photographer, and mom of three fabulous kids. I write about culture, identity, race, and belonging. Most days, you can find me reading or writing, with a cup of chai in hand. When it’s warm and everything is blooming outdoors, you may find me out on a walk […]
Meet Our New Writers!
We’ve been hugely blessed this year already by inviting three new writers to join our staff of monthly contributors. It’s not only a monthly writing commitment but a communal one. We want The Mudroom to be a family, writers and readers included. When we ask a woman to write for us we are asking her […]
Phillis Wheatley’s Revolution
She had words, from a birth language, spoken by a birth family, who gave her a birth name. Thieves tore almost everything from her, endeavoring to replace the originals with cheap imitations—like the new name they chose for her, from the boat that abducted her (The Phillis) and the family that enslaved her (Wheatley). But […]
What’s in Amanda Gorman’s Name
You know her titles: National Youth Poet Laureate. Inaugural poet (youngest ever). Harvard University graduate. Super Bowl show-stopper. Amanda Gorman: The one with her hand uniquely positioned on the pulse of a nation past, present, and future. But from a recent interview with Michelle Obama (Time Magazine),1did you know this about her name? “President Biden […]
No Ifs, Ands, or Buts
We who are strong in faith should help the weak with their weaknesses, and not please only ourselves. Let each of us please our neighbors for their good, to help them be stronger in faith. Even Christ did not live to please himself. It was as the Scriptures said: “When people insult you, it hurts […]
First comes Freedom, then Surrender, then Joy.
I have been granted the freedom to seek out new paths. I will not listen to the ugly whispering voice in all our heads that lies to our dreams. Bravely, I declare that voice has no power over me.
Restoration After Exile
“This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says to all the captives he has exiled to Babylon from Jerusalem: “Build homes, and plan to stay. Plant gardens, and eat the food they produce. Marry and have children. Then find spouses for them so that you may have many grandchildren. Multiply! […]
Murder, Jesus and Me
The summer I was seventeen, I gave my life to Agatha Christie. Curling on the floor of my room, I read a book a day. I liked Hercule Poirot best, then Miss Marple, then Harley Quin. I did not care for Tommy and Tuppence. At the beginning of the summer, I felt as though I […]
Tiny Steps Towards Greatness
“Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” – 1 Thessalonians 1:5, ESV. “You’re so brave,” she said admiringly as she slipped the receipt across the counter. I fought back the urge to laugh or cry, I wasn’t sure which. She saw me one side of me—the foreigner in […]
Doing or Being?
“Turn left. At a quarter of a mile turn right.” When my husband and I get in the car at our home in the Chicago area to visit relatives in Missouri, we plug in our GPS device and get directions for every turn. And turn we do, left and right and left again…until we get […]
A Bridge to Span the Divide
It almost ruined our friendship. A cancerous disagreement gained cells every day while it remained unspoken, avoided, skirted in conversation. The longer it remained buried, the bigger it grew, until it could no longer be ignored. Through tears, we hashed out our grievances, listened, apologized, and contended for hours over the phone and in person, […]
Disagreeing with Myself and the lies we tell
I talk to myself a lot. It’s the joy of being an introvert. When I stop to think about it though more than talking to myself I disagree with myself. I talk down to myself and I question my actions almost on a daily level. I disagree, I second guess and I never come out […]