Ring around the Rosary by Gretchen Grossman

Ring Around the Rosary – Gretchen Grossman

I received a copy of “Ring Around the Rosary” two years ago in exchange for an honest review. This memoir is about an American woman who became a nun at the tender age of seventeen. She left five years later, married again, had two gorgeous boys, and taught school for twenty years. This tale touched my heart and soul in momentous ways, as many of the struggles Ms. Grossman endured overlapped issues in my life. Some have been critical of this true story, stating that it is harmful to the church. As a Catholic, I do not see it that way at all. When I was a teenager, raised in an abusive family, I wanted to be a nun as well. Had this memoir been…

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Bill of Sexual Rights

I have a right to my own body. I have a right to my own feelings, beliefs, opinions and perceptions. I have a right to trust my own values about sexual contact. I have the right to set my own sexual limits. I have a right to say yes. I have a right to say no. I have a right to sexual pleasure. I have a right to be sexually assertive. I have the right to be the initiator in a sexual relationship. I have a right to be in control of my sexual experience. I have a right to have a loving partner. I have a right to my sexual preferences. I have a right to a partner who respects me, understands me and…

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Celebrating the Poetry of Mary Oliver

IF  I  WERE There are lots of ways to dance and to spin, sometimes it just starts my feet first then my entire body, I am spinning no one can see it but it is happening. I am so glad to be alive, I am so glad to be loving and loved. Even if I were close to the finish, even if I were at my final breath, I would be here to take a stand, bereft of such astonishments, but for them. If I were a Sufi for sure I would be one of the spinning kind. Mary Oliver. A Thousand Mornings.  

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Non-Fiction

May 2018 Bring New Hope

Happy New Year to you and everyone! Yes. I am back. Hopefully nobody is hearing the creepy Jaws music right now. I wish I could say I am bouncing off the walls with zany energy. I would love to tell you that I am blowing up balloons, rubbing each against my head and attaching them to the walls at odd angles. If only I could announce how I am playing a noisemaker like the sax, although with much less finesse and sex appeal. None of that would be true, however. I decided not to fake it. I will say hello to your kind souls and stay clear of my mild depression. In honor of the late great Dr. Martin Luther King, on his 86th birthday…

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Red Admiral

It is the last day of summer. Are you as shocked as I am? I can just feel the scores of people who are complaining about it. On my side of things, it was a glorious summer. As a spoonie, I have several immune disorders. These include Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), fibromyalgia (fibro), and degenerative disk disease. I know! Isn’t that ridiculous? Like most, I love summer. Water skiing. Camping. Fishing. Hiking. I miss all of that.  Of course, I can do all those things but it takes planning. A preventative approach to pain control–every four hours without fail. It exacts a considerable amount of energy from my body and I feel like the poor butterfly that fell to my feet from a large tree. I…

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Activism

Stop Site C Now!

Laura Caceras stood with her sister, her mother’s namesake, and spoke those words to a crowd in honour of her late mother, Berta, a human rights defender and environmental activist, 2015 winner of the Goldman Environmental Prize, who was assassinated in her home on March 3rd this year, for her work to stop the same kind of bulldozers the BC Premier is trying to send tothe Peace River Valley. The place is the Honduras where she and others from Copinh fought against Central America’s biggest hydropower projects–a group of four dams in the Gualcarque river basin, including the Agua Zarca dam. Between 2010 and 2014, one hundred members of the group, were murdered in cold blood. I find this young woman’s words eloquent, driven, and…

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Mental and Emotional Health

PTSD and 2015

Happy Thursday. I hope you all are having a fine day. Mine is feeling positive right now, especially as I settle in to chat with you and to breathe new life into these pages. I’ve been ill for over a year now and this account and my blog fell by the wayside. I don’t share much about it while in the throes of uncertainty. Long periods of time can go by before I feel the ability to reach out to continue my work on and off-line. However, today I acknowledge that I have experienced my post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms to the highest degree. These include panic attacks, depression, insomnia, isolation, estrangement,  an inability to concentrate, and introversion. These issues have been huge obstacles…

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Happy New Year!

Isn’t it incredible to start a fresh new year? Yes, it’s 2016. Sometimes I find it hard to comprehend that. I mean, it is like being rewarded with a squeaky clean new life. It is not like those little folks whose first glimpse of earth fell on the 2016 side of the line, our future not past, only to win prizes and money sometimes.  However, it is a revered gift just the same.  With that, I celebrate a renewed effort, bursting with promise and hope.                      

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