Anesthesia, Grief & Healing

It’s tricky to get the right amount of anesthesia. Too much is harmful. Not enough and the pain is overwhelming. Anesthetized, we lose consciousness, yet don’t rest. The pain is numbed but the wound remains. The line between need and harmful excess is not easily definable. Ice cream sweetly distracts from pain, one scoop at…

Human Breath

Years ago Evan gave me this icon of Mary and Jesus with their faces touching. He had written the icon himself and relayed what he had learned of how vital human breath is to the ancient work of writing icons in the Church of the East. Now it’s packed away in a box awaiting a…

Love is Risky. Love Anyway.

We started out completely lost in each other. I only knew his love for me. It was as if nothing else existed. Sometimes it seemed my heart would explode at the sound of his voice or the sight of his loving gaze. And even though I’d been warned the feelings would fade, I set aside…

65 and Retiring

Reflections on Goodbyes and Pachangas It’s the unsaid “goodbyes” that hurt most. We moved and people disappeared from my world when we started over in a new town, a new church, a new school. Yet, the disappeared haunt my memory in the vague forms and incomplete sketches imagined by my younger self. My music teacher,…

The Prayer of Trust

In preparation for a talk on prayer for catechetical leaders in our diocese, I visited the adoration chapel at the parish where I work. I brought a journal full of notes from a recent retreat along with my favorite spiritual book with sound advice about prayer. I leafed through these, but instead of focusing, my…

Lifelong Married Love

I was 19 and he was 22 when on Monday, February 16, 1976 he drove me to Phoenix for a Bill Gaither Concert. Three friends from his church rode in the backseat of his parents’ car for the 100 mile trip. The front seat was our own private world. At the concert , his friend…

Thoughts on Flying to Chicago

The high in Phoenix today predicted to be 70°. Perfectly beautiful sunny weather. In a few days I’ll board a plane for Chicago where 6° the forecasted high. The lows are in the negative teens. I’ve never been to Chicago in the winter, but I am packing layers and layers of warmth. It still amazes…

Friends

We’ve been running (jogging) more than a year now, my friend and I. Mostly three days a week and 30 minutes at a time. My friend is more fit, ten years younger, and a lot faster than I. When we started, I ran my speed and she ran hers. But somewhere along the way, she…

Grasping after Beauty

  How elusive all the most beautiful experiences of life are! When we try to capture them, to possess them, to grasp them to ourselves we cannot. Maybe that’s why we take so many photos and share them with friends whom we hope will have eyes to see. I have been gifted with countless moments…