The Realm of Regret

My husband has a phrase that makes sense when he is talking about finances, but sometimes he says it out of the blue. He will say, “I should have bought Amazon.” In 1997, like any academic, Dan purchased lots of books, but that year he began buying lots of books from Amazon. I remember when…

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Angel in Red

In my deepest season of grief, I was called to rise up and go shopping for a formal dress for my niece’s wedding. I hate shopping. In the past, my sister Mary would go with me and make me laugh as she fed dresses over the top of the dressing room door. This was our…

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Casting Out Fear

Nestled on my favorite side of the couch with a well-worn quilt on a quiet Saturday, I make quick work of the book on my lap. I haven’t read A Wrinkle in Time since childhood, and the plot has grown dim over the years, yet I still vividly remember my fascination with the story. I don’t…

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Devouring Joy

If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don’t hesitate. Give in to it. There are plenty of lives and whole towns destroyed or about to be. We are not wise, and not very often kind. And much can never be redeemed. Still, life has some possibility left. Perhaps this is it’s way of fighting back,…

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The Woman in the Red Dress

In February of 1998, I became that woman. I was a 21-year-old newlywed, trying to finish nursing school and navigate marriage and life. I had a history. This history of chest pain, fainting and exhaustion had been diagnosed as a treatable valve issue. Doctors said I would “grow out of it.” But that year everything…

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Come Home to Your Feminine

Walking down the street in Portland, I was nervous, excited, and unsure about what to expect. Six weeks earlier, I had found the book Wild Feminine by Tami Lynn Kent. It had stopped me in my tracks and helped me to take the path less traveled. Now, I was in Portland waiting for my appointment…

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Examining the Archetype

“The Woman in Red” can mean many things in our culture. She can be the woman that bears the shame of cultural stigmatization that comes with being female and feminine. The biologically associated monthly “red” cycle that reminds her that she is female. This cycle at various points in history was so stigmatized that some…

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Tailor-Made Grace

I hadn’t met her before this cold January night when we were sitting in a terribly outdated conference room on the fourth floor of a downtown hospital. She kept fidgeting with her hands, and her eyes darted between her text messages and the clock on the wall. Her bright red sweatshirt was the loudest color…

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Lingering Lamp Lights

Flakes of falling snow sprinkle the greens and browns of the trees in the canyon, like flour sifted onto a chocolate cake. I gently inhale warm air, exhaling a silent prayer of gratitude. Drawn by the alluring glow of a myriad of miniature white lights, I turn to gaze upon a ten-foot Christmas tree. Simple,…

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Comforting My Critical Self

You know you have an internal critic when your therapist tells you that you have an “Integrated Self” and a “Critical Self.”

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