Picking up the scattered pieces

There are pieces of me scattered everywhere. Scattered parts of myself I dropped along the way. Some in fear. Some from lack of use. I am being asked to pick up those pieces. To follow the trail of breadcrumbs I left for myself. I guess the wisest parts of me knew I’d be back. That…

Your hands must empty

I used to be a master at walking down the same street and expecting a different view. I’d like to chalk it up to youth. Dating the same boyfriend a second time. He had already shown me who he was. We had broken up. But back I went. Knowing a certain management style and the…

Coming full circle at Christmas

We had come full circle in the space of two years. There we were, on the couch. I was giving a hug filled with love. It was gratefully accepted. And before you get too excited, my dog was the grateful recipient. Bailey. My faithful companion. My shadow. The one who has perfected the art of…

That something inside

“I may not know how to do this but something inside me does.” What a mantra. For those of us who were raised with a critical parent, a voice of self doubt, the first to desert ourselves when the screaming meanies of the world attack, as they are wont to do. I was raised to…

Beyond coffee

My day begins with the squeak of a door and the bark of a dog. Teenaged boys are not quiet by nature, but the squeak of the door is my fault entirely. I don’t oil it because it alerts me to people entering and leaving the house. And when you have teenaged boys, you want…

When push comes to shove

I missed the memo. Surely. The one that spells out, in detail, what being a “good” mother is. Specifically, I missed section 4, clause 28b, which states: “Push your child to excel. Push for constant busyness, excellent grades, a multitude of extracurricular activities. And it is not enough for those three conditions to simply be…

It does not feel right . . .

I saw a purple couch being moved into my neighbor’s house this afternoon. Purple. The most recent inhabitants of this house, Hugh and his lovely wife Doris, would have had a fit. Having lived in that house since it was built, they had a certain vision for what it should look like. And purple couches…

Get some s*#t done

I was reading recently that 18 percent of the population suffers from anxiety disorders. Pshaw. Those are just the numbers reflecting those who get officially diagnosed. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to tell you they’re much higher. Do you know how many suburban housewives have told me they pop Xanax regularly (“helpfully” provided via…

Got brave. Forgot the beret.

My brand new painting is gracing my laundry room. I’m not saying “my” because I bought it. I say “my” because the artist is moi. Take that, Mary Ann. For the uninitiated among you, Mary Ann was my third-grade nemesis in art class and one of the reasons I’ll never understand the term “art therapy”….

Two girls entered a wood . . . which one are you?

One emerged a skillful, confident woman; the other remained a helpless girl. The question, friends, is–which one are you? I come from a seemingly long line of independent women, women who did not always follow societal norms. So those girls in college who gushed about who they wanted to marry when they graduated? Yeah, I…

Put a stick in it

When walking my retriever, Bailey, she likes to set the pace. As she confidently trots toward whatever we may encounter, she rarely falters. Except when we come to a fork in the path. When a direction must be chosen, left or right, she hesitates often. Roughly 10 percent of the time, though, she knows what…

Vanilla is not a flavor

“Your need for acceptance can make you invisible in this world . . . . . . Risk being seen.” So said comedian Jim Carey in a recent commencement speech. He talked about his father, who could have been a great comedian but didn’t believe in himself enough to pursue this path. After many years…