Archive | My Life

I’m Gay

When I was eight years old, I wrote my first poem. I remember the moment the words came to me. I was lying in bed at night, the lines rattling through my brain, startling sleep away. I turned on my pencil-shaped bedside lamp, grabbed my pink diary and huddled up underneath the little roses on my wallpaper to scribble the words down before they were lost to me forever. I re-read them over and over, letting them seep into my mind as I drifted off to sleep, so full of mystery and fascination at this new craft that had opened up to me.

The next day, I showed the poem to my mother. It was a love poem, and the only thing she said was, “Why is this written to a woman?”

I didn’t know. (more…)

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I’m changing my name

The day Matt told me he was done with our marriage, I took myself out of the house. I bought a dress from a thrift store and sat alone in a booth at a pizza restaurant, eating my favorite toppings and feeling numb about the uncertainty that lay ahead.

Sitting in my car, unsure what to do next, words by Mary Oliver that I’d read ages ago came to me: “I was a bride married to amazement… I was a bride married to amazement… I was a bride married to amazement…” Hungry for more, I googled the line to find the entire poem: (more…)

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Come stand on the blank page with me

I am not ashamed of getting divorced. Divorce has been a winnowing experience for me.

First, I cleared physical clutter from my life, giving up things that I did not need in order to stay close to my girls. I budgeted carefully, gave up my car and simplified my spending habits so that I could stay home.

Then I cleared out emotional clutter, letting go of relationships with people who did not believe in me. I was told to get a real job or to stop homeschooling or to parent differently. I was told that everything bad that was happening to me was my fault.

But there were other people, people who stood by me, and I couldn’t have made it through this year without their support. (more…)

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I don’t know why.

Born of Starlight – Original Artwork 8×10 inches – $150.00 – BUY HERE

I don’t know why.

At night, after my girls drift off to sleep, I slide out from between their two warm bodies, slip out of my bedroom, and find a bit of space to sort through my thoughts about Matt leaving. I’ve been numb for months. But now that I’m starting to get a handle on my single-mom life, the parts of myself I’d shut off to survive are waking up, full of pain. And I’m tired. Of everything. (more…)

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On the Threshold of Fear

threshold fear

I never thought that I would be accepted as a vendor for Renegade Craft Fair in Seattle this winter. Renegade is huge. Their Instagram account alone has 139,000 followers. I had to put up my entire booth fee with my application, and all autumn I was making plans for what I would do with the money when they rejected me and I got my refund. (more…)

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Flops and Failures

Fudge flop #2 has potential to become a tasty sauce. We’ll see!

It’s easy to feel like today was a failure. I screwed up making fudge. Twice. I messed up a piece of artwork I was going to give a friend. Phoebe ate NOTHING so she was in a bad mood from being hungry. I wanted to take a break from “Christmas prep” to have a fun family moment and sing carols while I played guitar, but Phoebe kept saying, “No! No! No!” and then started twisting my guitar strings out of tune. Plus, we’re having a ton of issues breaking down a table we need to move into the living room, because we’re hosting Christmas Eve dinner tomorrow. And I feel sick.

I’m most anxious about not having gifts for people I care deeply about. Because of the fudge flops and the art flops and the LIFE flops, there are no gifts made for any of the family that is coming over tomorrow. Not even the kids. STRESS! We had *plans* for gifts, and we’d budgeted time to make them, but it’s just turning into an impossibility. On top of that, I have no gifts for a few local friends that I hold very dear in my heart. “How will people know I love them if I don’t give them gifts?? How will they know I care?? It’s Christmas and I owe it to them to show them that they are special to me! If I don’t get my special gifts made and delivered by Christmas, it’ll be a disaster!!” THESE are the thoughts and fears racing through my head.

Deep breath.

Say a prayer.

Complain to Matt about it.

Say another prayer.

Ok, God. Maybe I’m not supposed to make the gifts I’d wanted to give today. Maybe I’m just not supposed to give gifts this year. Is that ok? I feel uneasy about it. But right now I’m out of time & there are more important things.

Like playing with my daughter.

And kissing my husband.

And nursing.

And family time.

And opening gifts from Grandma & Grandpa Healy a little early (Thanks guys! Phoebe was super sad for a bit, and your gifts were a life saver!)

And, mostly, leaning into the greatest gifts that surround me: my dear family, a home warmed by love and spirit, and the grace of my Lord.

I hate being incomplete and imperfect. I hate not living up to my standards. But, I guess if Jesus came to Earth to forgive me for not living up to His standards, who am I to overrule the mind and heart of God? If Jesus can forgive me, I can forgive myself (I have to forgive myself…I need to forgive myself…).

Thank you, Jesus, for the gift of taking me just as I am and filling me with the goodness that You are.

A few pictures from the day…

Muffins are just an excuse to eat dessert for breakfast. And I took advantage of that excuse!

Busy. Busy. Busy.

Playing with Christmas stacking dolls.

No matter how busy it got, I still had my helper.

We had really fun family moments today, too!

Her hands are blurry because she’s tickling herself. Lol.

Nursed to sleep by the light of the Christmas tree. By Erin

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Giving Jesus the Gift of Your Sins

What does Jesus want for Christmas? He wants you to give Him your sins.

This is what I remember from church tonight. Between feeling sick & Phoebe not napping and crawling all over me & distracting me & the water she spilled on the floor and herself & changing her outfit & getting her more food & nursing discretely & coloring & and …. You get the picture.

But we made it to church. We were there with our church family. This is an amazing feat. It feels like something is always preventing us from worshipping with our church family: illness, badly timed car naps, being out of town. And I ache for church. I’ve missed it so much. I’m thankful for Christian friends and our mid-week community group, but church just FEELS different.
And even if I was mostly distracted, we were still THERE. We still sang SONGS. We took communion. Celebrated Jesus’s life, death & resurrection. Dear Jesus:

I give you my imperfection, my inadequacy, my incompleteness. Make me whole, in you. Fill me with your grace, that my heart might dance to the rhythm of your life. I cannot hold it together, but I am held together in you. I give you my brokenness, my unfinished business, my anxiety over relationships and unmade gifts and unbaked cookies. I give to you my fears. Fill me with your hope. Abide with me and be patient with me. I yearn to be the body of Christ and to let you love others through me…and I ask that you might also show your love to me, as well, this holiday season. Open me, fill me, invigorate me, let me find peace. And thank you for all the reasons surrounding me to find joy and holiness in even the smallest of moments.


By Erin

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Crayons and Road Trip Craziness

I’ve been getting so worked up today about our road trip this weekend. We leave tonight. It will be the first time Phoebe is in the car for so long; it will also be the first time she sleeps the night away from home. NERVOUS!!!
So, during her nap time, I sat down to craft this little crayon holder for her to play with in the car. And while sewing, I was thinking thinking thinking. And I was forced to calm down. And then I realized: Phoebe doesn’t need STUFF to help her have fun on the road trip. She. Just. Needs. Me. (& Papa of course). She needs us to be calm and fun and easy going. And no supplies or treats or toys or games can replace relaxed parents. So I finished the crayon wrap. And I’ll finish the laundry. And we’ll pack the bags and leave once we’re ready. But first I’m going to renew my heart and mind (or at least try to!!!). Instead of running around franticly throwing things together, I’m going to breathe, involve Phoebe, exercize emotional stability, and stop to smell the roses.Oh. And I’m going to be OK with things being imperfect and out of my control. Because the truth is: the only thing I can control anyways is me.

^_^ Erin

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The New University Place Library (Pierce County, Washington)

Today, Phoebe and I visited the new library in University Place for the first time, and I’m in love with it. The layout of the building is very thoughtful, with a large indoor courtyard perfect for playing inside on rainy days. The library is in the new building on Bridgeport Way, along with the UP Police office and a café. The children’s section of the library is well planned. There are many different places to cuddle up with a book: couches, sofa chairs, bean bags, child-sized chairs and tables…even a rocking chair nestled into a little corner (which I imagine is a favorite for nursing moms).There are tons of different age-appropriate activities scattered throughout: easy shelving and bins for board books, puzzles, crayons and pictures for coloring, and a slew of wall toys, as well as a “fun house” I forgot to snap a close-up picture of. I found this board book, My Foodie ABC, really amusing. It even includes the term “localvore” under the letter “L”!Another thing that impressed me was how clean everything was. The nooks. The books. The tables. The computer stations. Even the bathroom. And one of my favorite things about the layout was that there was a family bathroom right there, in the middle of the children’s section! So convenient! When Phoebe discovered it, she got a huge grin on her face, turned to me and signed “bathroom.” Then she slammed the door to it shut. The bathroom itself was spacious and easy to maneuver in. All in all, I was extremely impressed with the new space. It is much better than the hole in the wall next to Pizza Hut where the library had to camp out for five years.

I anticipate visiting once a week when rainy weather hits, especially since storytime for kids 2 and under starts on Thursdays at the end of September. Wednesday storytimes are for kids 3 and up, and on Saturdays, everyone can come. Storytimes are all at 10:30 am. Even though I’m not a resident of University Place, I was able to get a Pierce County library card, as a resident of Tacoma. So now we are members of the Tacoma library system AND the Pierce county library system. All you books and story times, watch out!!!

^_^ Erin

PS: Yes. I did, in fact, take a picture of a toilet.

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