Thursday, February 23, 2023


I watched a TikTok this week where someone was demonstrating how to tell what your default response was in a stressful situation. Flight, fight, freeze or fawn. You were to imagine you were in the room on the screen when the person in there got up and locked the door. What would you do? I felt my body shrink inward, trying to disappear into my recliner. At the same time I said out loud, “hide.”

I have therapy tomorrow. Hearing the truth isn’t necessarily getting easier in session but I’d like to think I engage more than I used to.  There’s no place to hide when I’m in session because my therapist can read me so well she knows what state I’m in at every moment.

I’m a very large woman. I think about how my tendency is to want to hide even as my body has grown larger over the years. 

~ Hope


Monday, February 20, 2023

On My Own Terms

I’m not sure what’s got into me, but I’m finding a freedom to be me. The saying over there resonated when I read it.

And then, I thought about sharing a link to a spiritual program I’m going to be embarking on in September, and realized I don’t want anyone IRL to find me.

Oh, the irony.

~ Hope

Saturday, February 18, 2023


I’ve often told people that my siblings and I are great in a crisis but don’t expect us to make our bed every day. When our parents passed away  (7 months apart) we each used our strengths to get tasks done. While I very much like the quotidian things of life, that hasn’t translated into an orderly house.   

In the past few months I’ve experienced a growing sense of settledness. When people ask me how I am, it’s a repeated surprise to me, that I can truthfully say that I am doing good. After decades of not being able to, it feels strange to check within and find some peace and contentment regardless of whether life is ticking along according to my preferred plan. 

For all those years I was unable to look any deeper than whatever circumstances were swirling around me. Resilience was foreign to me. I couldn’t be okay because of this, that, or the other thing. Years of the right kind of therapy have made the difference. 

Peace, whether it’s fleeting or not, feels not like boredom these days, but such a relief. 

~ Hope

Monday, February 13, 2023

Actually Seeing

 Glimpses here and there. I’ll take it.

~ Hope

Wednesday, February 08, 2023


Before I write anything here, I go look through my photos and pick something to post. Tonight, as I looked, I thought to myself - what depressing things I save. My nature has never been Pollyanna-ish. I’ve often envied those whose default is to look on the bright side of things. 

That said, even in the midst of uncomfortable, not easy things at the moment, I’m finding a contentment and gratitude within me. Simply being alive sparks gratitude within me more days than not. At the risk of sounding morbid, I often think about the length of years I have left. I’m not the kind of person who looks for happiness in the big things of life, but rather in the minutiae. One of my favourite words is quotidian

Yesterday I told my grandson how the sky in winter is a shade of deep cerulean blue not found in summer. Spotting a tiny leaf or stone brings me joy. Sometimes, as I’m washing dishes, and through the open window the breeze floats across my sink, the smell of the dish soap convinces me for a moment that I’m washing dishes on a picnic table in a campground. It’s a visceral and not at all unpleasant thing. 

Do we bloom only late in life? Or is it that we bloom again and again without realizing it?

~ Hope 

Sunday, February 05, 2023

Past Versions

I had the opportunity to connect this past week with someone who knew me during the worst years of my life. Years when I cried and despaired of ever changing. They were the one I called on for support and who could see in me what I could not. Who held out hope for me when I had none.

We moved to different parts of the country and over time our friendship waned. 

I used to attend, and then eventually lead, a bible study made up of older women. My children were young and I’d listen to these women chat about their adult children and grandchildren. I’d wonder at what age a mother feels no shame about what choices their kids make, especially if those choices are radically different from what you’d hope they’d make. 

One time, my long ago friend was visiting and was able to attend the Bible study with me.  She didn’t say too much afterwards.  In all honesty, I thought I was all that and then some. I had met this friend at a Bible study at her house in a time when I had never read it for myself. Now here I was leading one. Well, then.

I turned 60 this past year.  I haven’t felt shame for my kids’ choices for many years.  They’ve made all the ones I never expected them to make when they were young. They’re pretty incredible human beings. I’m proud of the people they are. They’ve each had some pretty awful seasons in their lives already. Cancer, mental health issues, divorce and more. After talking with my friend, who continues to see in me what I cannot, I’m joining her in holding out hope for not only for myself, but also for my kids as they continue to grow and change.

~ Hope

Friday, February 03, 2023


I sent this to my therapist before I saw her this week. I actually don’t hate it.  I know she sees stuff long before I do.  Just like I sometimes see things in others before they do. And they do in me. 

It’s been a week of recharging my batteries before I head into the busiest stretch at work, which will last for months. 

I originally went back into the workforce because I knew I needed to rub shoulders with people who saw the world differently than I do.  I needed to stretch and grow. 

I mentioned to a friend the other day that hadn’t I been stretched enough? She replied, “Well, you’re not dead yet.”        

~ Hope