It’s like the guy who enters a coffee shop and takes a seat at a table next to a group of women. One woman begins to share her recent account of a traumatic labor and delivery. In the company of friends, she recounts how she wanted to have a natural birth at home, but after… Read More Yes, but. . .
My dad’s parents each died when I was in high school. In both instances, I received the news via phone call and began the moments of grief alone. When my grandmother died, the school staff were made aware and quickly came to comfort and surround me with love. Days later, my parents and siblings traveled… Read More Extended Grieving and the Contemplation of Legacy
Several times a week our grandmotherly neighbor in Romania would knock on my door and deposit a warm 1.5 liter bottle of fresh milk in my hands. She was the delivery, providing the service for another neighbor whose primary means of income was the cash she received from the milk of her one cow. I… Read More The Season After
Shoes, soled with layers of dense mud, lined the porch. It had recently rained, turning the dirt driveways and road-side pathways into sludge traps. In this environment, shoes don’t come into the house. This was my front porch in Romania during the wetter seasons. In no time at all, the children’s shoes were trashed. I… Read More The chore of responsbility
Just as a crash test vehicle comes to an abrupt halt as it smashes into the brick wall, so the Christmas season is over. Some people feel like a crash test dummy, head bopping around, still in a daze as the whirlwind subsides. Aside from a lone aisle with clearance items, the decor in stores… Read More Distance and incense
Sunbeams burst through the fog that nestled among the fields and groves along a rural, two-lane road in southern Romania. On this early morning I was headed to the airport several hours away. Normally my car was loaded with three carseats and rowdy kids. On this day I felt the infrequent release of freedom that… Read More A murder in Romania hits close to home
It was a new-to-us botanic garden. Shaded pathways led through the foliage of South Africa and plants of New Zealand. Each curve brought curiously shaped leaves and vibrantly blooming flowers. I allowed the three older children, the oldest nine, to explore freely. After an hour of bamboo groves, manzanita habitat and all type of herbage… Read More Children, are you lost?
Lil’s P’s cowboy boots slipped on the side of the rock, belying its composition of pure metal. We didn’t expect to befall a space treasure on our Namibia trip, but it happened to be on a not-too-distant detour on the route from Windhoek to Rundu. We followed signs from the highway and when we arrived,… Read More Even This Stone – An Easter meditation; Grootfontein, Namibia
Every year I am struck by the one-liner about Mary in Luke’s account of the Christmas story, the one line that gives a hint of how she responded to the unfolding events. She rode a donkey while full-term pregnant, traveled far from home, pushed out a baby (as my children call it) in a barn,… Read More Where is the treasure in Christmas?
Transition. The word makes me tense. Our family is currently in the midst of transition, relocating from Eastern Europe to Southern California. For many, the end of summer signals an impending transition – families moving, new neighbors, new church, new job, new house with a different floor plan. For some, transition does not include a… Read More Perspective in the Midst of Transition