Author Archives: Petals of Joy

On Climbing Mountains and Trudging Valleys and Maundy Thursday

Ella was four. All knobs and knees and chubby cheeks. Cute as a button and bouncy as her pigtails. We were visiting her aunt in Atlanta—doing the tourist thing. There’s a mountain in Atlanta. Mount Kennesaw. Granted, it can’t compare … Continue reading

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What Parents of Strong Willed Children Want You to Know

Iron. Metal. Unyielding. Strong. Life-giving. Our bodies need iron to live. To create healthy red blood cells pumping through our vessels carrying oxygen straight into the heart. Pump. Pump. Pump. Relentless. Without the iron? Life is less. My son has … Continue reading

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Finding Shelter in the Shade

I’ve lived in Florida my entire life. The Sunshine State. In my born-and-bred-here opinion? It needs another name. Maybe something like the Frizzy Hair State? Or the Sweaty State? Possibly the Hotter than the Fiery Pits of Hell State? It’s … Continue reading

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To the Broken Girl on Valentine’s Day

I watch you post pictures and memes. I scroll down and stare at your hurt—my heart aching. Your desire to be loved, accepted, known sprawled on my screen with angry words and revealing poses. A longing for affection in your … Continue reading

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So. There’s This Thing Called Hope

Over the last week anger, division, and hate have fueled the newsfeeds. As millions feel the sun has slipped below the horizon covering their lives with darkness, millions of others see a sunrise bringing light to their shadows. And I … Continue reading

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When Christmas Sees Us

One after the other. Page after page. I read their answers to my question. It was a simple question. Who really sees you? Their answers? Nobody really sees me. I don’t have any true friends that would come to my … Continue reading

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A Dreary Day, Two Eagles, and an Election

Today was the damp and dreary kind. The kind that tempts with cozy socks and hot chocolate and Jane Austen. But there’s the job and the motherhood and the housekeeping. Sigh… I know I’ve been quiet. In the last several … Continue reading

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Mothering in the Dark

Ella and Caleb, My sweet ones. I knew all summer I’d write this letter. But now that it’s here, now that it’s time to write, I hesitate. Fear creeps in and I wonder what you’ll think of me. Because depression … Continue reading

Posted in Hope, Joy, Motherhood, Struggles | Tagged , , , | 30 Comments

Using the Language Our Teens Speak

Oh, friends. It’s been too long. The too long has been caught up in the rush and busy of a new school year. I know you know. Barely catching breath and running here to there. It’s as if there are … Continue reading

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For the Teacher at Summer’s End

I’m sitting at my desk. Music quietly plays in the background and a steady, soft rain falls outside my windows. My classroom is as ready as it can be. I’m not. In just a few hours, I will be gulping … Continue reading

Posted in Struggles, Summertime, Teaching | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments