Making a Name for Myself

When I was fourteen, my family and I moved to Lepanto, Arkansas. Before that, we lived in a suburb of North Little Rock called Sherwood. We were only there for a year and a half. Before that it was Brinkley—also a year and a half, and before that was Greenwood, which was three and a half years. I went to three different schools in three different towns, which were in three different states (Florida, Arkansas, and Texas) for my first three years of school. That’s seven different schools I had to have a first day of. Seven different groups of students and teachers that I told my name to. Seven different populations who mispronounced or misspelled it. And seven different places where I had to correct them. Again, and again, and again. 

Before we moved, I experienced my first real heartbreak. He was one of the preacher’s sons at the church we started going to after my dad got fired from his church in Sherwood. Timmy was six years older than me—yes, you read that right, and no, my mom and dad didn’t know about it until several years after the fact—but dating is probably too formal for what we had. We hung out at youth events. (The church was so young it hadn’t started a college ministry yet.) We talked on the phone. He gave me a ride home from church a few times, and we held hands in his pick-up truck. But then some of his college aged friends found out what had been going on and told him that he needed to break it off because I was too young for him. We’d been together for a couple of months by then, and I was devastated.

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Knox Writes

Photo from Pixabay

The preferred meeting space for our writer’s group was not available last Saturday night, so we moved Knox Writes to Panera in Fountain City. I texted Adam when I found out about the change of venue on Thursday. “Are you actually going to darken the door of a Panera?” I teased him. “What’s happening with the world?”

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River and Rail Theatre Co. Debuts New Musical

From Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat to Jesus Christ Superstar and The Cotton Patch Gospel, stage writers and musicians alike seem to enjoy the challenge of re-imagining Bible stories. It’s quite a task to bring new depth and color to a familiar narrative without taking any meaning away from the original story, and The Unusual Tale of Mary and Joseph’s Baby achieves this goal with great success.

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The Size of Sorrow


(original photo taken by Jenna Foster)

I wrote this poem three days after asking my doctor to put me back on medication for depression. Again. The words came pouring out of me that Friday morning, after I read some psalms and tried to pray. The kids were at school and John was at the gym while I sat crying in a recliner by the window. I’ve had many sad mornings in the last ten months, but I’m looking forward to a different kind of Fall this year. I still get worried, anxious, and tearful from time to time, but yesterday I realized some differences in the me-from-last-Fall and the me-from-now.

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An Unfinished List


Ever since I learned how to make a list, I’ve been documenting my life. I used to make lists of all the towns I’ve lived in, all the states and all the addresses, as well as all the schools, teachers and best friends I’ve ever known. It made me feel better to see these things written down in black and white, and it soothed the fear that I might forget important details. Perhaps I was trying to make sense of all the moving my family had done. Perhaps I thought examining those lists would help me come up with a formula to help figure out why life was so unpredictable. Perhaps I was hoping to use that formula to solve this equation called life, and then I’d be able to live the rest of my days with a different remainder.

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