Posted in Life As I Know It

Feeling More FraGEElay

This Christmas will be different for us. Partly because of life’s twists and turns, and partly by design. Life has brought us the first Christmas without my mom. It has also brought us a much smaller gathering around our table. This will most definitely result in a quieter day, and I’ve chosen to embrace these changes as a new way to experience Christmas rather than focusing on the differences as purely loss.

I’ve never had a Christmas where I wasn’t entertaining a group, and so I will cherish the opportunity to stay in my PJs longer and not rush to get things ready. Instead of trying to be the “hostess with the mostess,” I will strive to be less stressed and more relaxed. It’s all in the perspective, right?

And that perspective is also mindful of the fragility of life.

It’s true my mom is gone. But at 92, she had “the opportunity of a lifetime” and many years to experience—and now she is at peace. It is still a loss, but there is a sense of “normalcy” to her passing.

And then there are times when the fragility of life sneaks up on you in an instant and nothing will ever be the same again. Recently a beloved member of our church died at the age of 45…leaving behind her husband, two young boys, and many others who loved her dearly. In the span of less than two weeks, she went from not knowing she was ill to…dying. Just like that, she’s gone.

It may be cliché to say that our days are numbered on this earth, but the reality is that some of us, like my mom, have a number around 36,000…and others have less than one single day…or maybe more near 17,000, as our church friend had. And that may seem like a big number…until you run out of them.

We don’t know our number. At least I don’t know mine. But our days on the earthly side of this life are finite.

Life is fragile. We are fragile.

And so with our days numbered, we ought to be gentler to one another…and ourselves.

We need to choose kindness, grace, and service over hatred, ineptitude, and selfishness.

We need to forge a way, especially in these painfully divisive times, for love to win.

How we choose to use our days is all we have to work with in this fragile life.

My “fraGEElay” run began six years ago with this post. And while I have let this blog slip through the cracks of life, I am moved to once again wish you Christmas blessings…And if life, as it so frequently does, is not treating you gently, I pray you have people in your life who love you and stand alongside you…helping you pick up the pieces and create your own Kintsugi.

Merry Christmas, friends.

ALL PHOTOS ARE USED WITH PERMISSION.

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Posted in Life As I Know It

How the F*ck Am I 50?

[The little graphic that I made is so Pinnable, isn’t it??]

This past week, I became a quinquagenarian. No—it’s not a new dietary category. It’s a person who is between 50 and 59 years old. Yep, I stopped being a quadragenarian and am now a quinquagenarian. (I love dictionaries!!!)

(I also love the F word, and I trust if you’re still reading this after my title, you can handle a few more of them below…)

While I’ve embraced my new kinship with Sally O’Malley, it hasn’t been without some complicated thoughts and feelings.  Continue reading “How the F*ck Am I 50?”

Posted in Life As I Know It

Graduation Day Nears…Not Just for My Son, but for Me, too

The bittersweet reality of graduation

My son has attended school with roughly the same kids for 11 years, and now he’s nearing his eighth grade graduation. An epoch ago, the same held true for me. I graduated from the same school he is, and then I headed off into the great wide world.

It’s an emotional time. Not for him—at least not that he’s letting on yet—but for me. Continue reading “Graduation Day Nears…Not Just for My Son, but for Me, too”

Posted in Life As I Know It, Soapbox

Is Your End Game Eclipsing Your “Now Game”?

First day back from vacation is always a killer. After having reality suspended to enjoy life in out-of-the-ordinary ways, it’s tough to re-acclimate to the mundane. But it’s the perfect time to reflect on just what, exactly, do you want out of life?

Continue reading “Is Your End Game Eclipsing Your “Now Game”?”

Posted in Life As I Know It, Soapbox

2017—Will It Be a Year Full of Mercy?

Over the last several years, I’ve pretty much had a “word of the year” choose me. It’s a ritual I didn’t set out to create, but one that continues to show itself to me. It’s actually kind of weird. Continue reading “2017—Will It Be a Year Full of Mercy?”

Posted in Life As I Know It

What Happens When You Need a Heart Massage?

I got my MD from Grey’s Anatomy Medical School…There, I’ve learned all sorts of medical stuff—like how to pull a leech out of a nose, how to perform emergency C-sections with a clipboard, how a rash can be a possible sign of cancer, and so, SO much more. Continue reading “What Happens When You Need a Heart Massage?”