bella, leaving.

Now I have a date, an actual day that my daughter’s childhood will end. She will move into the University of Portland dorms on August 16th, assuming all goes as planned. Today I was alone, changing the sheets on Bella’s bed, and without warning tears filled my eyes. How many times have I performed this […]

paradoxes of parenting pubescents

Today my 13-year-old son and I were at the grocery store, and he bumped into one of his friends whom he hadn’t seen for a while. His friend apparently said to him “Oh yeah, the last time I saw you was when your parents attacked me.” I remember it clearly. We were having dinner and […]

everything flows, nothing stands still…

A week ago, after his second football game of the season, my thirteen-year-old son climbed into the back seat of his grandparents’ car and sat down next to me. My parents came from out-of-town to watch him play, and he played his heart out for nearly every minute of the game. Fifteen minutes or so […]

rest in peace Everett Williams, crystal child

Dear Lovely Death Dear lovely death That taketh all things under wing- Never to kill- Only to change Into some other thing This suffering flesh, To make it either more or less, Yet not again the same- Dear lovely death, Change is thy other name -Langston Hughes, 1931 Last Saturday I attended the memorial service […]

our stellar evolution

You, with your relative youth your pout, your upward gaze. A young stellar object. And me, in front of you by decades. I see you as if in a mirror, behind me coming up fast in your body a month now perhaps for every year I’ve practiced being alive. I’m a supernova to your protostar. […]

put your teenager in the meadow and watch him

Motherhood is daunting. No matter how many coats of denial and idealism one whitewashes it with, it is a formidable journey and it is not always easy to stay convinced of the delightfulness of the upbringing and management of the fruits of our genetic entanglements. Life is up and down, and take-it-as-it-comes, and full of […]

choosing to do wrong, and failing to do good…

Most of us have a youthful time in our lives that we look back upon fondly, even if it was fleeting or fraught. This period in our life is often characterized by experimentation, falling in love, creativity, or travel, but mostly by a sense of unbridled freedom and a feeling of endless possibility. This time […]

Don’t forget to enjoy yourself while you’re waiting for the light!

It is a hard time of year.  The darkness seems to gather momentum as the solstice looms.  These shorter, colder days amplify challenges for those who are suffering – the mentally ill, the homeless, the unemployed, the grieving, the addicted, the poor, the recovering – in other words, all of us in some way or another. […]

You can leave, but you have to take yourself with you.

When my first-born son was in fifth grade, he began having major issues with the idea of going to school every day. He made it through that school year which was not coincidentally a time of challenge for our family. His sixth grade year got off to a rocky start and continued along that trajectory for the duration of the school year, and he begged his father […]