Nostalgia, fathers, and finding our way

My dad passed from this life roughly three years ago and I miss him. Rather, I experience sentimental longing, or nostalgia, for the idea of him. I had a good relationship and experience with my dad. He taught me many things, supported many of my childhood aspirations, expressed love for me, helped me achieve some life goals, and we shared a love of reading. I miss spending time with him and miss the idea that somebody who helped bring me into thisRead more

Bitter with the sweet

Every year, a week after my wedding anniversary, I remember my Naval Academy friend and classmate, Jay, and my sister-in-law, Lana. Both are gone now, one to a naval plane crash and one to brain cancer. I miss their presence on this planet (even if our paths didn’t cross much while they were here because life is mobile and busy and challenging). And I miss other friends and colleagues lost too early to terrorism, war, cancer, and more. Life isRead more

30 years: a love story

Jennifer and I wed 30 years ago in our hometown church. She (art history major and artist) and I (newly commissioned Marine Corps officer) vowed to live our lives together. Thirty years on and having seen many marriages end by divorce or all-too-early deaths, we hold no illusions that what we’ve created is guaranteed to survive another three decades. But we do know this…we love each other, and we like each other. And liking each other came long before loving each other. Our story began when we met inRead more

Resisting the eyes of the tiger

I tripped and fell while walking to work on Friday, one of those middle-of-the-street, catch-your-toe-on-a-crack falls. In younger days I would have bounced up while hoping nobody witnessed the event. With this fall I just laid there, and then yelled, “Oh, fuuuuucckk. It hurts!” That’s not an expletive I use much, but it just came pouring out in the moment. Once I managed to rise it was obvious I was alone in the street with my injured ego, unless someone secretly watched through windowsRead more

My journey back

There was a time when I endeavored to build a vast library of physical books in my home. A visible badge of honor marking the territory I’d read during a lifetime. Something to pass on to others. A daily visual reminder of words digested. For years I accumulated and stored and hoarded. And over time dust collected, and the space filled, and I soured on my initial dream of creating an admirable personal collection of books I’d read. On the heels ofRead more

New paths

Sometimes, when I fret about the stresses and demands of everyday life, I remember that we’re made for more than worry and despair. We’re made in the image of a creator and our genes and souls contain hope and potential waiting to be unlocked. We are fearfully and wonderfully made and possess the opportunity to reach for new paths and realities, no matter the noise from the world that threatens to drown us. Peace, hope, and joy to you inRead more

The eyes have it

Even the little one to the far left fixed its eyes on me through the brush. The herd tolerated me for a few minutes then bounced away. I encountered them recently on a walk west of Cheyenne at the High Plains Arboretum. I’m drawn to the eyes, the intensity of their gaze, and didn’t want the encounter pictured here to end. After snapping a few photos I lowered the camera and stood absorbing the life presence of these creatures. I fully understand thatRead more

Love and shadows

This cross monument sits in the lawn of my church in Cheyenne, Wyoming. I appreciate it for many reasons, but mostly because of the plaque reminding viewers that the greatest commandment is love. In Christianity, Jesus’s death by crucifixion is viewed as an act of love for the world, his sacrifice leading to resurrection and the hope of new life for all in Christ. I also like how the cross casts its shadow, reminding us that we live in the shadowRead more