Category Archives: musings

Control is overrated

I love all of Courtney Martin’s writing on On Being.  I highly recommend you check her out.  But this piece, The Right Decision Is the One You Make, ripped me to shreds.  I’ve read and re-read it, and I urge you to do so. Because of her gorgeous words about parenting, yes: “I’ve been on […]

your days are short here

I have had Adlai Stevenson’s line about “your days are short here” in my head recently. I love his whole speech, in particular those last lines, and have written about them before.  But it’s specifically the notion of something drawing to a close that feels salient to me right now. I can’t get the line […]

Be here now

I loved Michiko Kakutani’s wonderful article about Obama the reader, Obama the writer, as he prepares to leave the White House. There was much about the piece that moved me, but it’s this line I can’t stop thinking about: He has a writer’s sensibility — an ability to be in the moment while standing apart […]

What passes and what endures

Swinging on Christmas Day at the park near our house where Grace and Whit basically grew up. Something about this picture speaks to me of what passes, and of what abides.  And of trying to capture a child – a life – in motion, which is what I try to do here, and which I […]


In early January, Matt was showing me something to do with his leg.  He got onto his knees and turned around.  Just the mere fact of that caused me to draw breath: a few months earlier, he’d been immobile, flat on his back, with a good but attenuated prognosis. My fingers moved unconsciously to the […]

to see as many chips of blue sky as we can bear

Maybe this is what grace is, the unseen sounds that make you look up. I think it’s why we are here, to see as many chips of blue sky as we can bear. To find the diamond hearts within one another’s meatballs. To notice flickers of the divine, like dust motes on sunbeams in your […]

word of the year 2017

Sometimes, I choose a word of the year.  Sometimes, I don’t.  It depends on whether a word presents itself to me in the days and weeks leading up to the end of a year. My 2016 word was ease, which felt both ironic and essential as the year unfolded not at all easefully.  In 2011, […]


I never saw the movie Boyhood.  I’m afraid to, honestly.  I worry it will be sadder than I can handle.  I remember years ago, at dinner with a friend and her husband, the movie came up.  I admitted that I was terrified about the heartbreak that would result if I saw it. “What happens, something […]

Darkness visible

These are the darkest days.  It is fully dark by 5pm here in Boston.  And when we wake up, it’s still dark.  The days are short, but they feel long at the same time.  Yet, strangely, I don’t find this depressing.  I have written before about my very specific memory from December 1996, working one […]


Saturday evening, sunset from our hotel room, Florida.  I shared another shot of this sunset on Instagram. Whit and I were studying vocab words recently and we came upon the word “creed.”  He asked me what my creed was. Without thinking too much, I immediately answered, “My creed is to pay attention.” He looked at […]