this is a page for

Category: Parenthood

Counting the Ways

Saoirse and her team finished up their novice basketball season this weekend. These girls exceeded all of our expectations (Saoirse: “I didn’t think we were going to win one game!” Her dad–her head coach–sheepishly agreed): they were undefeated this season save one loss, and I never thought a group of 3rd and 4th graders could grow so well together. It was amazing to watch–and reaffirming, quite honestly, to witness firsthand how steady hard work can make even the biggest doubters say, “Oh, okay. I wasn’t expecting that.” As I said good night to my oldest girl after the last game of her tournament, I told her how proud I was of her. She asked why–what was I most proud of?–and I had to sort through the reasons to get to my answer. (I’m a mom, you know. Ask me how I’m proud of one of my kids and I turn into a mushy pile of Elizabeth Barrett Browning poems.) Saoirse’s gotten faster this season. She’s more confident, more sure of herself, more in control…

Presidents’ Day, 2018

Since the beginning of the year, each Monday I’ve posted a recipe of a meal from our family table. Not today, though. I’ve been trying to continue on with life as usual since Wednesday. Have been trying to carry on while batting the thoughts and fears and tears to the side like they’re nothing but angry flies. The flies are too close, though. The flies are a plague. Today two things weigh on my mind, and they’re what have stopped me in my tracks: a) new knowledge of what, exactly, bullets from an AR-15 do to a human body and b) this poem, shared by writer Kathleen Donohoe, which was written in May 1974 after a firefighter pulled a dead child from the rubble of bombings in Dublin. Each, unfortunately, is not independent of the other. Read the poem a couple of times. Focus especially on the last stanza. Maybe next Monday some of us will be continue to pretend that life goes on as comfortably as always, and maybe I’ll be lucky enough to post another recipe that my kids may or may not like and that you…

The First is Ten

My biggest girl turned 10 this weekend. Let me have a moment to let that sink in. I could go on about how talented Saoirse is. The music. The writing. But you don’t want to hear it. And I can’t tell you about it without the seams of my skin bursting with all of sorts of brag-y pride. I could tell you how strong she is, how much she’s grown, how steadily she’s become confident in her own body: the way she moves down a basketball court, how she runs across the school parking lot toward me at the end of the day. But you don’t care about that. You have your own kids and nieces and nephews to admire. I could tell you how much she seems like me though she looks like her dad. How he saw her during class a couple of weeks ago–the children were doing a writing exercise–and was taken aback by how the class business swirled around her, but she kept her head down, did the work, didn’t get distracted by questions and chatter and conversation. It…