To Withstand One’s Own Wrath

Entering the office today, before saying hello to anyone, addressing the day’s agenda, or even putting down my bag, I internally itemized a long list of things askew. Pillows awry in room 7. Table decor down in room 3. Side table off center in room 1.  Dirty plate and to-go box in kitchen. And in…

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When I Can’t Feel Christmas

“Above all, trust in the slow work of God.” — Pierre Teilhard de Chardin 5:34 p.m. on Black Friday and everything was right on schedule. The tree was set up, lights lit, and boxes of ornaments ready for unpacking. Jim Carrey’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas played in the background, as was tradition, and Mom had just slid the…

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Domino Effect

I feel nothing changes you like a new city and new people. I remember when I got the news that my family and I would be moving. I had come home from school and was tired and pissed off as I often was, being an angsty seventh grader. When my parents told me our house…

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100 One-Minute Conversations

My eyes are red and teary, and my dad’s arm is around me as we sit together on our white, wooden back porch swing. Even though I don’t remember this moment in many details, the photo taken by my mom brings back a variety of emotions. The backyard of my family home is staring at…

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The White Dress

Bagpipes resounded “Amazing Grace” as the June rain pounded the roof of St. Paul’s Presbyterian Church. After the bridesmaids processed in pale pink tea dresses to the tune of “Canon in D,” the large wooden doors shut. Thunder clapped, marking the redemption of this day, the many dark chapters of our stories now expanding and…

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Rhythms of Comfort

Whiplash. Home is a word we don’t understand. Moved abruptly from countries and continents, from a place of dust to concrete, in days. From the land of never enough to more than enough to spare. Whiplash.

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Temporary Havens

Like so many others everywhere, we are self-isolating at home during this unexpected and truly frightening threat. My husband and I find ourselves in a “high-risk” category, not just because of our age (we are “elderly” on paper, it seems).  Russ has been on a blood thinner since 2002, and my battle with septic shock…

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Bitchy and Blue

“Aren’t you afraid they’ll expose you to the virus?” “Are you crazy?” The phone calls from friends and family were kind and filled with concern for our wellbeing.  My answers at the time? “Sometimes,” and “No.”  Riding in the waves of news of the pandemic, I felt assured in my decision to offer two young…

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Home

A Voxer notification appeared from my friend Mike: Hi Rachel, I’ve been thinking about you and wondering what you would think of spending a half a day or a whole day on a silent retreat away from social media and family and friends. We would be happy to help with your kids to make this…

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Welcome to New York

The city that never sleeps catches a brief catnap before dawn. Faithful street sweepers work tirelessly amongst the murmurs of taxi-cabs. The quietness is peculiar as we clip toward 30 Rock with anticipation. In a few hours, the streets will fill with women dressed in suits and sneakers, toting heels in leather bags, amongst diligent…

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