I was a hyper child. I spent a lot of time in my early teens creating a list of synonyms for hyper.
Effervescent. Enthusiastic. Gregarious. Energetic.
I was, and still am, quite enthusiastic.
Recently my husband and I had a rift; a simultaneously seismic and common-place one for a marriage of 22 years. It was enough to cause us both to stop, turn towards one another and assess the state of our union. We both deemed a sit-down check-in valuable.
We are committed to long-term success but encounter pretty reasonable hurdles and challenges for two humans choosing coexistence. We both agree we are each other’s person (thank you Grey’s Anatomy for that word choice). We like our brand, the Ream Team. So, we’re staying put.
But sometimes we hit bumps in the road…
Something dawned on me this morning while helping my son with online school. It is a small step towards understanding the sheer fury I feel while trying to coax an uninterested child with Down Syndrome to do school work.
I write this not only as an illuminating observation for myself but as a possible explanation for what other parents might be feeling during this moment in time when we thought our children would be gloriously away at school for 6 hours and are instead in our dining rooms.
It just occurred to me that I am listening to the teacher…
There is a little corner in Los Angeles where radical hospitality lives. I took advantage of this space after a near-desperate call to my sister-in-law to see if the small place in her backyard was open and available. Within minutes she replied, “Yes, of course!!!”
That much of her life and work is guided by these two words, radical hospitality, made the asking even easier.
Tucked under an enormous oak tree, this once-dilapidated garage offers calm to a tumultuous spirit.
It is no small thing, this dear friendship with my sister-in-law, my husband’s stepsister, a world-renowned artist. We eyed each…
“Depression takes all my vibrant colors and bashes them together until I am gray, gray, gray…Perhaps this is why so many depressed people become artists, to reclaim the power of answering the question: What is the point? We are clawing at the ground with pen and paper while drowning in quicksand.” Glennon Doyle, Untamed.
“What’s the point?” That’s my prevailing thought on this bright sunny day in Southern California. I want the sky to match what I feel inside. Instead, I wrestle with the profound incongruity between what is external and what is internal.
The sun is mocking me.
In light of recent events illustrating our deep divisions in many categories, I considered tabling this writing. But just as I am certain there are historical and present-day issues requiring sophisticated reflection, I am equally certain that there are threads of togetherness that can be still be woven into a tapestry to connect us in the midst of our differences.
There are five words I want you to consider adding to the interactions you have with people in the new year. They are powerful and have the potential to offer a transforming paradigm for connection.
We’re All in This Together.
Recently, I was checking my email and saw a message with exciting personal news. I yelled out with enthusiasm. My youngest, who has Down Syndrome, jumped up from his seat at the computer with screams of his own. He didn’t know what we were celebrating. But if there is celebrating in our house, he is in!
It isn’t just celebrating.
It’s extra celebrating.
Having a birthday? He is right there to light the candles and sing. At 5 am.
Christmas morning? I can hear his breathless enthusiasm as he punctuates every other word with, “I’m so excited” while trying to…
Writing on this platform has rapidly become one of my favorite things. I enjoy expressing my voice and sharing it with an audience bigger than my mom and dad (who are great fans, don’t get me wrong) For the first few weeks, it was an unadulterated joy, crafting stories and learning new ways of publishing them. My friends remarked about my energy and enthusiasm.
But I was waiting, waiting for “Not Enough” to infiltrate this love.
And “Not Enough” has arrived.
I received a Nespresso machine for my birthday this weekend and I think it has changed my life forever.
This is not a plug for the company, although the pods aren’t cheap, so Nespresso, if you’re reading…
I haven’t been this productive in a long time. I mean, after cleaning out the fridge, making a three-course breakfast for my son, organizing my closet, editing another piece on Medium all before showering, I think drinking four Nespresso pods is my new formula for success.
I zipped through my shower, never having shaved my legs faster, and leapt from the water to…
It started simply. I needed a summer job in college and the owner of a farmer’s market stand needed help. It never dawned on me that I would navigate the biggest ethical dilemma of my life at twenty-one.
Professor. Woman in middle age. Mom to one surfer and one kid with Down Syndrome. Fireman’s wife. Writing about all of it.