Please Heal My Heart

Brokenhearted Girl Two days changed my life.  At the end of the first, I knew I was different… dirty different. Once again, my parents, four siblings, and I—the happy and helpful middle child—had just moved in response to military orders. My parents always

Don’t Need to Run Away Anymore

As a young child, I was a hard-working, exemplary student throughout elementary school and the beginning of middle school.  Once eighth grade started, I began to spend time with the wrong crowd.  I knew the stuff they did was wrong, but still I adopted their habits.  Smoking,

Strong Arms and True Strength

“Ready, go!” were the only words I heard, and then it was over. The year was 1980, and I was competing at a Canadian Arm-wrestling Tournament on a friend’s offer to pay my entry fee. Though this was only my first victory, it propelled the course of my life—one I never could have

Learning a New Dance

At five years old, I knew exactly what I wanted.  “Mommy, I want to be a ballerina when I grow up.” Tutus and tiaras, music and applause, glitter and make up…what girl could want anything more? “Okay, sweetie,” my mom responded kindly, as she did to so many of my childhood dreams. 

Confessions of a Mortician’s Daughter

My father was the local mortician in our small town, so conversation in our home daily centered on the matter of life and death. The fear of dying consumed me. Sometimes I imagined myself lying in a casket in my father’s funeral home.

Looking for Peace

My baby slept peacefully in his crib. His father, my young sailor husband, was away at sea and due home in a few days. Although we were expecting another baby, he had asked for a divorce. The rain outside on that cold November night matched the tears running down my cheeks as my heart broke