Cancel Culture and Campfires

It was December 22, and the fire crackled as we nestled up in our sweatshirts, the oldest among us sipping whiskey to keep warm on our parents’ back deck. Beneath the large mesquite tree, we were occupying a new space as siblings: the first of us married and the youngest among us bidding childhood goodbye…

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The God of Last Straws

Once upon a time, in the land of Israel, during the days of the Judges, there came a famine upon Bethlehem. A woman and her husband looked at their barren field and bleak options and decided to risk a move, praying for a chance to begin again. They would take their two sons to the…

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Where Did Wonder Go?

The sun is setting before the low-grade headache from another day spent on my screen fully registers. But now the muddy light of my apartment has sharpened the artificial glow of the laptop, and I can’t help but wince. Note to self: explore blue light glasses. A bit of self-awareness ushers me into my body,…

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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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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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Craving Confidence: How Lonely It Sometimes Feels to be Certain

A little over a month ago, at a modest cabin near a gurgling creek, I spent a weekend with a mishmash of friends. It’s the second year we’ve gathered in this humble wonderland where we cook and play games, talk late around the fire, and make ourselves tired on sunshine and laughter.

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If Life Was a Food Fight

My critical eye takes in my form in the long oak-framed mirror as I tuck the billowy white top into my jeans. On principle, I don’t wear white. “White” is my lunch, make-up, and pit stains on display for the world to see. It’s impracticality, stamped with an expiration date.

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Shattered Glass and Peonies

As I walk each afternoon, unplugged for just a moment from the news ticker and the marching, the masks and the hand sanitizer, I see the peonies spill over the edge of sidewalks in my neighborhood. I can’t help but stop to take them in: their smell and explosive petals. Peonies remind me that lovely…

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The Quiet Hope of Quarantine

There’s something about the whole world choosing together to be alone. Like a kind of permission, or a moment of tag—“It” has finally caught up to you after you tried running so far and so long, and now, tired and exhausted, you have a chance to turn and accept what is, to become It, to…

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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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