Its Saturday morning and the winter is coming to an end. Although here on the tundra we are wary of any irrational exuberance until May. The phone rang and I heard Heidi’s voice say, “Want to go for a walk?” I cannot think of anything I would rather do at this moment than join her and her beautiful sad-eyed dog Sara on a stroll around the Lake Como in the crystal sunshine.
My mum and dad would take a walk every Sunday afternoon. They talked quietly while my sister and I wandered along with them, playing make-believe games and seeing who could run the fastest. In the past few years I have become a walker again. There is singular joy in strolling along talking to my companions or, when I am alone, talking to myself. It seems as if walking frees the tongue and the mind. Difficult topics can be broached more easily; old hurts can be mended, secrets may be revealed, sadness might suddenly find release, and laughter often comes unexpectedly. Read more
Is it hormones or the economy? Am I just a bitch or do I have multiple personality disorder? It’s so easy to blame weird moods on hormones that I figure it must be something else. Aren’t clichés and lazy, hackneyed, knee-jerk reactions meant to be busted? For some reason, my husband sees no earthly reason not to blame my shifting moods on my hormones.
Like a dummy, I recently asked him, “Do you think the reason we’re bickering so much lately is because my hormones might be making me overreact?” His response was such an unqualified and enthusiastic yes that for a minute there I thought he’d decided to take up ballet—such was the bounce in his step and high-flying leap to foregone conclusions. Right then and there I knew it had to be something else. Like maybe he was the one in a bad mood?
However, like so many of us, I am given to self-analysis; so, just in case, I called my gynecologist to ask if the recent adjustment to my bioidentical hormone formula Read more
“I can hardly remember the last time I received an actual letter let alone one I enjoyed as much as I did yours.”
So begins a recent email I received last week. The writer wasn’t responding to a holiday form letter I sent, but a personal letter written only to her, telling of events transpired and thoughts I’ve had since my move to Vermont.
I sat down at my desk one wintry afternoon and wrote while a gentle snow tucked the world outside my window under a sparkling blanket of white. An email would have taken half that time, but would have given a quarter of the pleasure—to both writer and recipient.
Email replaces letter writing as our principal means of both casual and formal communication; it is, after all, so terribly convenient. But in bowing down to expediency, we are losing the detailed records of individual lives that inform the future about today. Read more
“Honey, do we have someplace we keep towels?” My husband holds a stack of clean, neatly folded towels that I had left on a chair; the chair upon which he plans to sit. This, as far as I can tell, is the only reason he picked up the towels and began looking for another place to put them.
“No. We have no place for towels. In the nine months we’ve lived here, I’ve never figured out where to put them.”
“Oh,” my husband says helpfully, “how about in here?” He opens a cupboard door in the hall—actually the linen closet—and stares at several shelves of folded towels, washcloths and sheet sets.
“Oh,” he says crestfallen. “You’re being sarcastic.” Read more
Bonjour, I’m hormonal. So, I’m wearing my motorcycle crash helmet around the house. No, I do not ride a motorcycle. The helmet is so that if I give in to temptation and bang my head against the wall, I will not hurt myself. And the pull to do it on an evening such as this one is so strong that I can easily be confused with a crackhead on withdrawal.
It is 11:00 p.m., and I have been in my studio working on jewelry for hours. I am bleary-eyed. When I walk into the kitchen, this is what I see: Read more
Botox causes brain damage. Cell phones cause brain cancer. Teenage children cause brain implosion. Okay, that last one is NOT true—but they do make you feel like your head is going to explode.
Especially when you are trying to hear on NPR a report about the link between brain damage and Botox that was just discovered by an Italian research team and your teenage son is talking about — what? I very exaggeratedly turn UP the volume on the radio and shake my head at him.
These actions are apparently universal American body language code for “Please speak louder,” because he leans into my face and says — what? Read more