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Showing posts from November, 2020

10 Things I Am Still Grateful For, Plus a Few More

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 Seven years ago I wrote a post on Thanksgiving with a list of the things I'm grateful for.  Today, I am grateful for that list, because in this crazy mixed up totally effed up year, it's nice to see that some things remain true.  Actually, it's not just " some things " but the most important things -- those remain solid, constant, more true than ever.  I am still grateful for every single thing on this list, so I am reposting it, and adding a few wonderful things I am newly grateful for, since 2013.  Here's what I wrote in 2013: # # # I have only 16% power left on my laptop and I'm too tired and comfy to get up and find the power cord, so I better rip off a thankful list right quick.  And so: NPR .  My life would be less than it is without everyone at NPR.  Thank you from the bottom of my well-informed heart. Coffee .  My children would be in danger without coffee.  Thank you for keeping me sane, which in turn, keeps them safe. Good pillows .  Nothing fee

My First Beautiful Thing

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Cold kitchen, whistling kettle: the water is ready, the ground awaits. Now for the pour-over: watching steam rise, Chemex fill, and sparkly diamonds dance as the water settles and filters – suspends me every time. I lift the good, heavy pot from the gleaming chrome and pour. The warm, puddle-y sound, quiet but lifting, rising in pitch as the mug fills, is dark and swirling. A splash of cream and voila! At this early hour,  I've done my first beautiful thing.

I Recommend Remember When

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Parenting is hard.  There are many things I’ve gotten wrong over the past 20+ years, and I feel those failures acutely and often.  Some days, these people I am raising seem like a pack of cynics, a swarm of pessimists, a horde of disaffected youth.  My 16-year-old daughter said just yesterday: “We’re all just riding around on a giant rock. Nothing matters. There’s no point to anything.” Parenting Fail?  Teenage angst?  High School junior feeling deep in her core that final exams are cruel and unjust?  In weaker moments, I’m sure their negativity is all my fault. But on this fine, cold morning deep in the heart of 2020, the Marx Brothers might just prove me wrong.  Last night, the kids hopped on one of those fabulous memory trains, riding “Remember when…” moments endlessly through the evening.   Remember when all the girls slept on toddler mattresses lined up on a futon frame in their tiny bedroom not fit for three? Remember when the boys accidentally locked themselves in their own clos

Maybe Messy is What I Need Right Now

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Let’s face it, we are all exhausted at this point.  I call it the Coronelection Complex, and it’s hitting me hard. Texts from friends, zoom calls with family, and tweets from strangers all indicate that I’m not alone.  We are a weighed upon people, are we not?  One way Coronelection Complex is showing up for me is that I often feel like taking to my bed.  All I want to do is go to bed early and wallow.  Sometimes I read.  Sometimes I stare at a blank page with a pen in my hand. Mostly I doom scroll, against all my better judgment.  Very little feels like what my restless heart is actually looking for, but my bed and pillows keep calling.  And when I answer that call, all I want to do is shut the rest of the world out. My family has other ideas. It’s as if my lying down in a stupor sends a radar signal throughout the house: BUG MOM.  IT’S TIME TO BUG MOM.  The dog gets the signal too.  It doesn’t take long before beating hearts both human and canine descend on my bedroom to create mayhe