10 Things My Dad Taught Me about Teaching

Aaah, Mr. Fowler. My seventh and eighth grade shop teacher. (I was the only student to cut her finger on a jigsaw one of those years.) Also a high school math teacher before that. (He taught my mom when she was in high school. Sssshhhh.) And if memory serves, he was also a teacher of […]

Read More

This Year’s Senior Project: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

I am the senior class advisor this year. The last time I was in charge, our tragi-comedy Othello, with an all male cast (shout out!), rocked the house—and not one, but two! nights in a row! Will I be able to outdo myself this year? Will the class of 2019 beat the class of 2015 […]

Read More

13 Things about Permanent Marker, My Memoir, That You May Not Have Known

The memoir developed out of my MFA’s thesis manuscript written between the summers of 2012 and 2014, but the very first piece I wrote that made it into the book was done the winter of 2011, just months after the accident. After getting my degree, I let it all simmer for another two years until […]

Read More

Update: 16 Random Things about Me, Ten Years Later

What you are about to read was originally published on Facebook on January 24, 2009, at 7:48 p.m. I had just turned 40. It is now February 2, 2019, and I am publishing this on my website at 6:07 p.m. I have just turned 50. I will revise each of the 16 to match who […]

Read More

Scars: The Treasures of Breakage and Reparation

Scars are defined as marks left on the skin or within body tissue where fibrous connective tissue develops to support and bind as a wound heals. Scars can fade, be covered up or even be surgically altered, but they can never go away. Scars remain. Scars remember. And everyone has at least one. * I […]

Read More

An Open Letter to Ricky Martin on the Occasion of My 50th Birthday

Dear Ricky, I am 50 years old today. Certified gold. And in honor of that, I was hoping to maybe get a personal birthday shout-out. Just like that gorgeous commercial made several years back where you sang “Happy birthday.” The one I posted from YouTube to my Facebook wall this morning. Maybe you could do […]

Read More

The Ghosts of Grief

Lately, I just can’t shake this dull, overwhelming sadness that has attached itself to me. Like some annoying, intractable specter hanging about. Losing my loved ones. Impending doom. The fear of death and the unknown. Grief for what is yet to come. The thoughts cloud my brain, tugging at happiness. They beg for attention. Stop […]

Read More

5 Things Writing Helped Me Understand after Nearly Dying (Twice)

“You are the author of your own life story,” the skinny strip of green bubble letters outlined in neon pink promised. It used to hang above the chalkboard on the far wall of my classroom. Back then, I believed in that language arts message as hallowed inspiration. Now? Teacher-catalog bullshit. Only recently, I had become […]

Read More