Bringing Up Boys

As a girl, I read Little Men and Jo’s Boys by Louisa May Alcott and dreamed of living in a modern day Plumfield, rambunctious boys running hither and yon. A life full of mischief and hijinks and outdoor play. Through my school years, my closest friends were always boys; and I was thrilled when God’sContinue reading “Bringing Up Boys”

My BFF Won’t BRB

My daughter hops into the car after school bubbling over with the day’s news. In our short drive home, she gives me the social update for her classroom. Graham pushed Billy on the playground. Sam passed Katie a note during math. Sarah and Emma aren’t speaking to each other because Emma said Lucy is herContinue reading “My BFF Won’t BRB”

Love’s Last Words

When I was young, a woman I knew died unexpectedly in her sleep. She went to bed seemingly healthy and never woke up in the morning. For all of the years after, her death haunted me with its terrifying possibility. It was entirely plausible that I too could die without warning, that I could snuggleContinue reading “Love’s Last Words”

The Day After Valentine’s

Valentine’s Day was never a special holiday in our marriage. Instead, it was the day after that held all the magic. The day the Whitman’s Sampler dropped to 50% off at the Walgreens down the street. That day, Rob ran out and grabbed me the biggest box of chocolates he could get under our self-imposedContinue reading “The Day After Valentine’s”

“Not Gray … Hoary.”

I stand before the linen closet in the bathroom, a trash can beside me. I’m told that it’s helpful to tackle one space at a time, so I’ve decided to go through Rob’s toiletries. There’s not much really. The elastics from his despised Invisalign treatment. Trash. The half-used Chapstick. Trash. The dental floss. Might asContinue reading ““Not Gray … Hoary.””

What’s Normal in Grief

What is normal in grief? Our culture has lots of advice, little of it helpful. Any mother who’s endured a miscarriage knows the difficult messages a grieving younger person hears. “You’re still young enough to have another one.” “At some point, you need to move on.” The pressures I feel as a young widow aren’tContinue reading “What’s Normal in Grief”

A Place That I’ll Call Home

In 2016, Rob and I hit a tipping point. We’d been married almost 15 years, and the pace of our life felt like it was getting too fast. Work responsibilities were increasing, our children were growing, and activities and commitments were eliminating margin from our life. Nevertheless, we’d always been committed to a simple lifestyle.Continue reading “A Place That I’ll Call Home”

“Mystic Sweet Communion”

Rob and I grew up in church traditions that loved hymn singing, and we gravitated toward churches like that as a married couple. On Sunday mornings now, when I’m missing Rob’s arm around me in the pew, the hymns remind me that he’s near. “Yet she on earth hath union with the God the ThreeContinue reading ““Mystic Sweet Communion””