The Crystal Ball She Wished She’d Had

I read the comments on an...more

An Eternal Multitude of Despondency

Instead of letting me go in an ambulance, my parents drove from Albuquerque to Prescott, Arizona to take me from the tiny regional medical center where I had been for nine days to the much larger hospital in Phoenix. When they arrived to collect me, I was furious because I was not dead yet, and I was furious at my parents because one time they had wanted to have a baby, and that baby was me. Horrible, miserable, disappointing, useless me ....more

Sanctimonious Concern

In 1994, I lived in a rental house not much bigger than a breadbox with my then-husband and our baby. Next door was an even smaller rental house, barely the size of a garage. The young woman (and I do mean young; I was 23 and she...more

You Chose

You took no medications and consumed nothing artificial during pregnancy. Your baby is pure and the least a mother can do is sacrifice her comfort for 9 months. You consulted with your health care provider during pregnancy and chose to continue your anti-depressant ....more

The Trajectory

When you take a baby or child to the doctor, that doctor looks at your child in light of whatever you, the parent, claim as the problem. The doctor a) dismisses you with admonishments to relax; b) makes a diagnosis and treats your child; or c) refers you to a specialist. You, the parent, will a) accept your admonishment and watchfully wait while trying to relax; b) go to another doctor; c) administer the prescribed treatment; ...more

Darkness Is a Cannibal

I remember most of it like snapshots, the way you remember things that happened when you were a very small child. I remember the police walking up to our door, and why? Could it have been just because my daughter Abbie was at my house and her dad, Robert, was angry about that? ...more

Ninja Ballet

Carter’s favorite thing to do is something he calls “swinging stuff” and that my husband and I refer to as “ninja ballet.” It involves a plastic sword, light saber, or stick, and lots of jumping, spinning, and twirling (of both the stick and the boy himself). Carter is devout in his practice of this art. For at least four years, he’s spent many hours every week, sometimes several hours in a single day, working with his stick in the yard ....more

For Kelly Thomas

I’m compelled to put some words here in honor of Kelly Thomas, some kind of expression of solidarity with his family. I want to express my outrage at yesterday’s acquittal of the men who murdered him, but my feelings are big and language seems too small. I went to sleep last night thinking of the Thomas family, woke up this morning thinking of him, and praying a prayer about the men who killed Kelly that I’m pretty sure God doesn’t honor ....more

Come As You Are

I am a Christian. It’s hard for me to say that in a public forum, just those four words. Usually, if it comes up in conversation, I push out a dozen or more words in a rush: I’m a Christian, but I’m a peace and justice Christian, a love everyone Christian, and if you want to know about my faith I’d love to tell you, but if you don’t want to to talk about it, that’s cool too ....more

Happy Birthday, Abbie

You have a baby, and everybody tells you, “Enjoy it now; it goes so fast!” and you’re enjoying it, but you’re also living the day-to-day blur of diapers, sippy cups, lullabies, preschool decisions, homework help, and curfew arguments, and then one day your realize that all those people were right. It goes so fast. Faster than you could have imagined ....more