“Grief has two parts. The first is loss; the second is the remaking of life.”
Anne Roiphe, Author

In the last few months, it has become blatantly clear, you can neither rush nor postpone grief. The process will not be denied. I’m guilty of trying to move forward too quickly. Guilty of trying to rush through the stages of grief. I know several others who have taken the opposite approach. They try to bury it-and I say try because grief always resurfaces and often when you least expect it. And grief is clever as it not only shows up as…


There are some who bring a light so great to the world that even after they have gone the light remains. -unknown

Grief is unpredictable and incredibly uneven. I’m functioning, working, accountable, meeting needs, living up to my obligations, and mostly happy, but even on my best days, I have to admit that I’m operating with very little margin. This means that the space between “okay” and “not okay” is razor-thin. This is new to me and if I’m honest, really strange and uncomfortable. I am the one who is unfazed, unfrazzled, composed, and in control. I don’t wear my…


Definition of twenty-twenty hindsight

: the full knowledge and complete understanding that one has about an event only after it has happened

I am not a resolution person, but I do believe in goal setting. And more than that, I believe that knowledge is power. I’ve come out of 2020, like many of you-wounded, weary and (hopefully) wiser. In the midst of all of the uncertainty of the past year, I’ve collected these tidbits…lessons learned in a year that no one could have anticipated.

Chase your stars fool, life is short. -Atticus Time is finite. Everything has an expiration date. I’m not a YOLO…


Sometimes, only one person is missing, and the whole world seems depopulated.

Alphonse de Lamartine, author

I did it. But I wish I didn’t have to.

I made a full Thanksgiving meal on my own. I roasted a turkey. Peeled a mountain of potatoes. Used the drippings to make gravy. Baked a pan full of dressing, green beans, dinner rolls, an apple crumb pie, plus loads of turkey-themed cookies. I even opened a can of cranberry sauce (it’s okay, you can laugh at me). …


My mother was a fabulous cook. She had this amazing way of making something truly delicious out of nothing at all. Looking back, she would have been a great contestant on The Food Network show, “Chopped.” You know the one where they give you a mismatched basket of food items and ask you to miraculously make something amazing out of it in 15 minutes flat. She was that good. One of my favorite memories of her cooking was just how much she could do with eggs. She could make them a million ways and they were always BOMB-and if she…


This rainbow appeared in the sky on the day of my mother’s funeral.

“Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak knits up the o-er wrought heart and bids it break.” William Shakespeare

You can call it a charmed life, a blessing or maybe it was just dumb luck, but my experience with grief has been minimal until recently. I barely remember attending funerals as a kid and when we did, I really didn’t have a strong connection to the departed. However, all that has changed in adulthood…especially in the last few years. And here, in 2020, I feel like I’ve been hit with the worst heartache yet after losing my Mom.


Grief is just love with no place to go. -Jamie Anderson, author

Not many know this about me, but I love to sing…and I sing all the time! I have a deep love for all types of music…popular songs from the radio, church hymns, TV theme songs, little ditties from musicals, you name it-I’ve even been known to make up my own songs! But here’s the thing, if we’re going to get real here, my love for singing is CONDITIONAL as I rarely sing in front of others. And while I wouldn’t necessarily categorize myself as shy (more of an…


What humility does for one is it reminds us that there are people before me. I have already been paid for. And what I need to do is prepare myself so that I can pay for someone else who has yet to come but who may be here and needs me.

Maya Angelou

I am neither an optimist nor a pessimist. I categorize myself simply as a realist. Midlife will do that to you. I fully believe in the good of mankind. I have high hopes for myself and the human race. I like to give people the benefit of…


Facebook quiz results. And these things never lie! Cowboy up!

Real cowboys never run, they just ride away. Anonymous

Texas is calling, but first things first: Everyone knows that I would die on the prairie. Seriously, D-I-E. I’m not exactly Veruca Salt spoiled, but I’m pretty sure I land somewhere in the pampered princess department. That being said, I’ve discovered something about myself recently…I LOVE westerns. Seriously, L-O-V-E. Of course, I’m categorizing this new development as just another part of my silent midlife crisis.

Most weekday mornings (ok, Saturdays, too) you’ll find me glued to the television, coffee in hand…


The funny thing about chasing the past is that most people wouldn’t know what to do with it if they caught it. — Atticus, poet

I am a sucker for nostalgia. “Remember when…” and “how we used to….” followed by “back in the day….” Yes, ALL good stuff! In my heart, I carry around a zillion memories, stories and images, of days gone by. I can’t help myself. I remember our old house (the one by the church,) my Pepto-Bismol pink basement bedroom that had a closet with a secret door. I remember awful lunch ladies who wouldn’t let me…

Anna Ortiz Spencer

Freelance Reporter. Web designer. Social media consultant. Writer at hymningandhaing.com

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