Category Archives: Uncategorized

Somewhere Not Far from Here

It is a foggy morning in Bayfield, Wisconsin. I am visiting dear friends in their home overlooking Lake Superior. Before I am fully awake, I amble to the piano with my first cup of coffee in hand. I sit down … Continue reading

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Calamity Management

I’ve entered into a new phase of caregiving with my sweet 94-year-old mama. I’m calling it calamity management. Her memory is faltering more and more these days, so I’m trying to remember what I’m forgetting she forgot. Or something like … Continue reading

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A Tale of Three Gifts

Gift #1 July 4th would have been Karly Wahlin’s 33rdbirthday. She died at 27, weary from struggling with her challenging body and ready to leap into the new place she had glimpsed for years. Her mother, Lois Swope, and I … Continue reading

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Your Voice Matters

I’m in my car driving home from an evening of Scrabble with my 94-year-old mom. I’m listening to a podcast to keep me company on the familiar thirty-minute drive: “Making Obama” from WBEZ, the public radio station in Chicago. In … Continue reading

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On Naming Kip

A handful of us are standing around our cars, preparing to leave after singing for a woman in hospice. We are all members of the Morning Star Singers, a volunteer comfort choir I founded in 2007 to bring singing and … Continue reading

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Laughing and Crying

Like many other young women of my generation, I knew every word of Joni Mitchell’s iconic record, Court and Sparkby heart. I had some recent experiences that illuminated one particular line of her song “People’s Parties.” Photo Beauty gets attention … Continue reading

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Improvising Kindness

I am in a small city in the Upper Midwest to deliver several keynotes for health care professionals. The morning after my arrival, I am taking an early morning walk along the banks of the Missouri River. The geese are … Continue reading

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