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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To Bleed and Break

Sometimes all I can see of my heart is red. Red for the bleeding, the breaking, the pain. Red for the sorrow, the wonder at the way I’m wired. It takes a lot to hold out my heart. To bleed for others, their hopes, their suffering, a relentless concern for those who repeatedly break me…

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Life to Take, Life to Give

Tonight, my thoughts are full of her. It has been seven months since my friend and colleague left. That summer night, as the sun was disappearing behind the basswood tree, the call came. I had finished mowing the lawn and noticed the white letters of a friend’s name across the black screen of my phone.…

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How to Be Friends: A Semi-Successful Guidebook

She was radiant. Ruby red lipstick, a thin gold chain around her neck, and hair touched with the slightest curl—the kind that only come when you’ve stopped trying to fabricate them.

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Not Excluded, Not Included

The musical score danced in my ears as I remained in the theater seat, soaking in every last note. Salty tears reflected my state of being over the previous two hours while I sat watching Little Women. My thoughts diverted as my mother’s friend approached me. Her smile preceded her question.

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Breakups

During my tenth-grade year of high school, my best friend Brooke and I experienced the thrilling highs and devastating lows of dating relationships. Guys, at the time, were equally magical and unnerving, and we learned quickly that we needed a trustworthy gal pal to navigate the tricky waters of understanding guys. Together we made a…

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Coauthoring Meaning

The conversation that evening was sweet, as much a contributor to the celebration as the sumptuous meal and quiet candlelight at a favorite restaurant. My friend wanted to hear what had been significant for me in the year that was finishing and what I was looking forward to in the year ahead. As the evening…

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Confessions of a Relational Control Addict

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. 1 John 4:18 When I left for college, I experienced a major friendship shift. The people who had known me during adolescence were replaced with a whole college campus…

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Belonging is the Beginning

How do you talk about the girl who is the beginning of every story you tell? The girl whom everyone seemed to experience similarly: intense, passionate, a bit wild, and fiercely loving. At least, that’s the theme that ran through every remembrance shared at her memorial last month. And that’s the girl etched in my…

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Knitting Through Grief to Gratitude

Last year, my friend Ted died from esophageal cancer. He was my seventh friend to die in seven years, and I was bereft.

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