Category : Family life

Happiness Is…

“Are you happy?” I hate that question. It’s confusing. I don’t know what “happy” looks like, and so I’m never quite sure if I am or if I’m not. Does “happy” mean that I love everything about my life? That I live with no regrets? That I have more good days than bad days? That I feel worthy? Even though I clearly don’t know the answer to the question, I seem to invite it into

Mother In Progress

It’s nearly Mother’s Day. There are commercials with people talking about their wonderful, loving mothers; there are greeting cards for lauding caring, dedicated mothers, and signs proclaiming brunches and lunches and dinners for celebrating amazing, incredible mothers. I don’t particularly like Mother’s Day. Don’t get me wrong: I like celebrating my mother. I like reminding her (and myself) that I love and appreciate her. But I don’t feel like Mother’s Day celebrates the kind of

Isolation vs solitude

A friend shared the following quote with me the other day: “Isolation is our retreat from the paralyzing pain of indecision.  This retreat into denial…is the first stage of mourning and grief…we can remain alone as a way of not allowing ourselves to get in touch with the pain of our grief.” I have always preferred solitude to being with large groups of people.  As a child, I loved sitting in our living room next

Truth Teller

Someone in my life told me recently that I’m a truth teller. It felt good to hear that, because I believe telling the truth is the only thing that releases the pain of the past, and opens the door to living in the present moment. It’s not easy, but it is redemptive. But it is so much easier for me to tell the truth when doing so makes me look good. It has been a

A Happier Holiday

Last year’s Thanksgiving was epic. We were celebrating the first Thanksgiving without my grandmother, who died six months earlier.  There were six adults, seven kids, and three dogs crammed into a three bedroom cabin.  A vicious stomach bug made its way through most of the kids and some the adults over the course of the weekend.  I fought with my mother and left in tears.  A brief visit with my in-laws hit a snag when