Category Archives: feelings

My Greatest Sorrow is My Greatest Joy

Strengthening the Soul

“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things” ~ Robert Brault

She’s dying. My 9 year old daughter is dying. Today I can say it without crying, but not necessarily tomorrow. Each day is filled with up and down emotions. Some days I am hopeful for a cure, but many days I am filled with despair and an indescribable sadness. My heart aches. My tears burn. My head and my body are tired.

You see, my daughter Abby was recently diagnosed with a rare, genetic disease that is terminal. There is no cure or treatment. No cure. 100% terminal. Every child diagnosed with this disease will die. I have never felt so helpless. As mothers, it is our job to nurse our child’s boo-boos, dry their tears, teach them how to deal with sorrow and upsets, and give them hope…

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Before the Mast and on The Deck of the World

Fran Wilde

I did not wish to take a cabin passage, but rather to go before the mast and on the deck of the world, for there I could best see the moonlight amid the mountains. I do not wish to go below now. 

~ Henry David Thoreau

sunset

A couple weeks ago, I found myself at a place I consider more home than the house where I grew up. In that place, there is a rocky beach and access to a large swath of the upper Chesapeake Bay.

Believe me when I say that I know how lucky I am to have that place. I do not think I would be who I am without it. I doubt sincerely that I would be here at all.

When I first came to that place, I quickly earned the nickname “Mouse.” At eight, I was very small indeed. I did not speak much, and when I did, it…

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On Starting Over

montaigbakhtinian

Moving_Day-,_Montreal,_QC,_about_19301     Driving a friend’s car, turn on the radio, NPR, I think. An actress is talking up a play she is in. Once a big name in Hollywood, now she is doing Brecht at a regional theater. She’s knows the talk, though, the promotional talk. She says that now, having gotten older and wiser, she is only interested in roles she could fail in. If success is guaranteed, she says, there’s no learning. (I remember once talking with someone who studied child development in Africa. One of his principal messages was that stress was crucial to learning. In the absence of stress you don’t learn.)

I think of “my” journal, Zeteo; this seems often a project that might fail, at which I might fail, and I can imagine that this is indeed part of what makes it a good project. Perhaps not so much for the challenge of…

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“Life changes in the instant. The ordinary instant.” -Joan Didion

ennui elucidated

Exactly a month after dad died, I found myself in North Carolina again. I missed my family, my dad’s house needed to be cleaned, my dad’s cremains were ready, and I just needed to get away from DC.

My dad’s cremains were split into two nondescript boxes. I kept both boxes on my lap in the car and I could not stop thinking about how a big tall man had been reduced to two boxes of ashes. Ashes to ashes. It struck me as odd, how as a child I used to sit on my father’s lap and now the roles were reversed with him sitting on my lap.

We did a lot at my father’s house. Food donated to a food bank. Junk discarded including a huge tub of individually wrapped plastic cutlery and a million copies of a single document denouncing Mormonism in favor of Christianity. Three bedrooms…

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