Abruption

On November 21st, two and a half-weeks before her due date, our daughter made a panicked 4 a.m. call to our house. We’d expected that call, just not quite so early—and not quite so terrifying. “Mom, I’m bleeding like mad. We’re leaving for the hospital NOW. We’ll leave the door …

Perfect Imperfect Family

Family. It confines us, it defines us, it refines us, and it aligns us. Our lives are spent in the context of family—natural or other, whether or not we appreciate it. Best-selling Canadian author and artist Michael O’Brian, in his book Father at Night, a collection of personal stories and …

Beautiful Expectation

I began 2013 by compiling, with regret, my potential “grand-lasts.” No grand prospects on the son side. Four grandbeans on the daughter’s—the youngest, newly turned two. I suspected I’d entered the final season of beany babies. Last rock-a-byes, large eyes locked onto mine. Last tiny arms encircling my neck. Last …

Come along to the Holy Land

My new passport arrived today. I slid it from the red-striped ExpressPost envelope and flipped through its ornate pages, wondering which country’s stamps will one day decorate the crisp parchment. India? Africa? US? UK? God alone knows. One country is likely. I’ve known that ever since the day the Preacher …

Make time

I ticked something off my bucket list the other day. # 27: Make cornhusk dolls with my granddaughters. When our children were young and we lived in Ontario, our family ran a small cottage industry called “Church Mice Associated.” Since we identified with the poverty of that proverbial rodent, we …

Which hole?

My daughter and I, along with several other women from our church, stood in our friend Loretta’s driveway, preparing to leave on a weekend retreat. As her husband helped load her luggage into their van, I noticed a small circular cutout in the driveway under the van’s bumper. The shallow …

Are We Still Grateful?

The turkey’s in the soup and the soup’s in the fridge. The stuffing got eaten and the eaters got stuffed. Happily so. Guiltily so, if what they’re stuffed with includes a rich dessert. According to the calendar, Canadian Thanksgiving is over. According to my spirit, it lingers. And so it …

Hope to the Last Minute

For a few months in my teens, a large bear rug decorated my bedroom floor. Open-mouthed and silently snarling. I liked that rug, except for one thing. In my small room, there was only one place the bear fit—with its large head facing the door, exactly where I placed my feet …