The Ten Year Plan House

All of my life, I’ve been a long-range planner. I’ve loved thinking about broad swaths of time. My childhood journals charted out which boy I’d marry, the names of my children, even floor plan drawings of my dream house. When I met Rob, he and I jumped excitedly into planning together. Time seemed infinite, andContinue reading “The Ten Year Plan House”

Putting The Pieces Back Together

A shattering sound breaks the early morning quiet and sends me shuffling from the sofa into the kitchen. He stands frozen, penitence in his eyes. “I’m sorry, Mom,” he says as he gently gathers the pieces of the broken mug from across the counter. “I accidentally hit it with my elbow when I turned around.” Continue reading “Putting The Pieces Back Together”

On Wearing Black

As soon as the weather got above 50 degrees here in New England, my kids started wearing shorts. My youngest transitioned to sleeveless dresses. My boys raided the large Tupperware bins in the closet, pulling out tie-dye t-shirts and basketball shorts, convincing me they really weren’t cold at all when they played outside with bareContinue reading “On Wearing Black”

Waiting for Reopening

Last week, our governor released Massachusetts’ reopening plans, and our whole family sighed with disappointment. While coronavirus infections have slowed here in the Commonwealth, numbers are still high enough that Phase 1 of our state’s reopening plan looks little different from a stay at home order. For now, change will come at a pace thatContinue reading “Waiting for Reopening”

When Despair Speaks

Many people who mourn don’t feel they can admit the darker parts of grief. The days they don’t get out of bed. The feelings of anger or hopelessness or desperation. Oftentimes, when a grieving person tries to share these darker places, his or her feelings are diminished or silenced by others. “There’s always hope,” we’reContinue reading “When Despair Speaks”

The One Who Lost Her Husband

“Oh, you’re the one who lost her husband,” she says as I introduce myself and shake her hand. “Yes, that’s me,” I reply. I wonder now if she caught my name, or if this single event in my life will be my defining feature, the one thing she remembers each time she sees my face.Continue reading “The One Who Lost Her Husband”

Reteaching Loveliness

My youngest daughter adores pigs. What began as an obsession with Peppa Pig cartoons has grown through the years into a full-blown love affair with swine. She owns a full pig costume, complete with snout, ears, and pig slippers. She fawns over adoptable pot bellies on Petfinder.com. She sleeps in a bed invaded by anContinue reading “Reteaching Loveliness”

The Comfort Between the Words

I once visited a high end restaurant in Vancouver, British Columbia, where video screens were installed in individual bathroom stalls. Once you latched the door behind you, the screen booted up and began to play. It felt like the perfect motherhood cliche. Even in the bathroom I couldn’t get a sliver of silence. We NorthContinue reading “The Comfort Between the Words”