For Moms with Tears

I see you hovering at the base of the big slide, ready to catch your little daredevil as he proudly descends the last of the challenges this big kid playground has presented. And I am aware of your young mama heart, a little sad that he’s already conquering these obstacles.

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Honoring My True Name

I grew up with the names “it,” “thing,” and occasionally “numb nuts.” These gruesome names marked me while simultaneously dehumanizing me within my home. I was given an American name when I was adopted from my orphanage to the U.S. I heard this name used mostly outside of my home by teachers and friends. There…

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The Dragon Slayer

In honor of the tenth anniversary of Red Tent Living, we are featuring a monthly legacy post written by one of our regular contributors from the past decade. Jennifer Owens joined us in 2015 with her signature winsome vulnerability. This post was one of her first as a regular contributor and originally appeared in October…

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Good Morning, Sister

My sister died a few months ago at the end of May. It was morning. She had been sitting in her chair, in her pajamas, and it seems, she simply passed. She had been having pain issues due to a recent series of falls. Even so, her death was unexpected. She was 59 years old. Truth be…

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Bethany’s Thanksgiving Playlist 2022

November is here, and we have upon us another year, another holiday season. Coming into this season, my heart is tender and yet free and filled with love. Much has changed from the first year I created a list, yet there is a comforting familiarity to the remembering that this holiday provokes within me.  Remember.…

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The Next Chapter

At seventy-one, I accept the reality that I am living the third third of my life. Sometimes the realization frightens me, but at other times, it brings me peace. There is nothing I can do about time marching on, so I may as well relax and enjoy. The realization that I am living the last…

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Still Soaring

Am I where I’m supposed to be? Do I have the inner strength, gentleness, and wisdom to venture out once again into the unknown?

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Hand to Heart

“the truth is my hope is mangled. it limps and creaks at night. you speak of hope like a white bird soaring. it’s okay that mine is the battered exhale, a bench with splintered wood.” — Cole Arthur Riley

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Turning the Corner

Passion and Joy. Both are tricky words for me. I’m perhaps beginning to turn the corner on joy. I grew up in a family that claimed to be joyful but hid secrets of sexual trauma, addiction, and abuse. We were a happy, faith-filled family—or so I was told. There were good times, but they were…

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Learning to Breathe

The playground was filled with big third graders. I missed being on the first-grade playground where I felt safe. Second graders had been moved to the main Tremont School campus and recess was now an uncertain time where older third graders roamed. I ran to the swing set and Sally yelled at me to “wait…

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