From Family

What Sustains Us

Our family had an incredible loss a week ago when my son and his wife experienced a failed adoption, six weeks after a beautiful baby boy was placed in their arms, given their last name and told he would be theirs from that day forward. What transpired since that first life-changing day resulted in the awakening of such love for this sweet boy and full-on immersive 24/7 parenting until they received word this past Tuesday that they would have to surrender their son to his birth parents. The details are not mine to share other than to say this has…

We Want to Know We Mattered

My mother’s day was made over the weekend by a visit from an old friend of my brother’s and his wife. While my brother hasn’t seen this friend in decades, my mom had seen the couple off and on through the years about town – or stopping by in her car to say ‘hello’ if she saw either of them in their yard. She thought the world of them but didn’t necessarily expect they felt even remotely the same. When Christmas rolled around this past December, and they didn’t receive a card from my mom, it made them consider the…

A Wild Ride Through 2017

As 2017 winds down its final week, I find myself – like so many of you – reflecting on the year we experienced and thinking about what’s ahead. We can never be fully prepared for the inevitable changes, even those that are a part of the ever-moving circle of life, and 2017 really drove that…

Unpacking the Past

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not much of a singer, but if you get me in a car all on my own then I can belt out a tune like nobody’s business and with such gusto that you’d think I was singing to save my own life. Thank god no one can…

What We Never Leave Behind

This past weekend, we did the final cleanout of my parents’ house – my childhood home – and while I knew it would be emotional, I wasn’t as prepared as I thought I would be. What was toughest to deal with was seeing my dad’s garage empty, devoid of personal items. Funny, it’s been 16 years that he’s been gone, but I still think of the garage as his – and for a man of few words, someone rather hard to know actually, that garage provided a glimpse into who he was and what mattered to him. And as my…

What We Didn’t Know

We always knew this would end badly; there were no good solutions and never the promise of a cure. What we didn’t know was how it would come about or when the end might be. Death is tricky, and even in days of waning health and absolute signs of what was to come, strength can arrive from seemingly nowhere and final days sometimes become final months. We knew it would be hard, knew it would be painful, knew it would release feelings that had been buried for years, and recognized that we didn’t know what else might erupt. What we…

My Family is My Home

Over the past decade, I’ve become increasingly detached from my home, particularly more so in recent years. I’ve found this curious, given that I’ve lived there for 30 years now. When I moved in, as a young woman in her mid-20s, with a three-year-old son and ready to give birth to my second child, a daughter, in the month ahead, I saw this home as nothing more than space for us all – albeit temporary. We had the makings of a beautiful yard, in a great neighborhood in a small town we loved. The house itself though was an end…

On the Precipice

This has been a difficult week. In most ways, it’s been no different than any other. Each of us in the family went to work, took care of personal responsibilities and even had a bit of social time together. We made plans for a family dinner over the weekend, and perhaps even an afternoon at a N.H. fair. But in between, there have been tears – and a few adult beverages. There have been hugs that felt tighter, laughter that seemed a bit too necessary and memories shared and sometimes quickly swept away. It hurts less if we don’t think…

We’re All Someone’s Child

I awoke late this morning, having enjoyed some much-needed sleep. It’s been a particularly busy last few weeks, few months actually, with many, many good things to enjoy but less time for rest. So that combined with what has seemed like a never-ending litany of atrocities globally and domestically has worn me down a quite a bit – and left me awake in the dark hours of the night wondering how we’ve gotten to this place and what we, what I actually, can do to change the path. After rising finally at 11 am, after a few earlier awakenings, I…

To Mikey, on His Wedding Day

From the moment you were born, you became our Mikey. While it took a bit of convincing for your father to agree if we had a second son, we’d name him Michael, he finally acquiesced. We kicked around nicknames during the decision process, and when I said Mikey, he said no way; he’d never call…