And photo of a man’s face in the newspaper confirmed his guilt. Seriously, I didn’t even have to read what happened. The article’s heading had something to do with kidnapping a child.

Raising daughters in a country that upholds (some) values you don’t share can be tricky. Perhaps braver moms than I remained steadfast and spoke their mind. I opted to wait to share my views until the children were old enough to think for themselves. This was no easy thing since my nature is to question, speak up, and push against injustice. By the time I was a mom, I’d tossed out a myriad of political theories and isms. Why would anyone listen to those who talk and talk and never walk the talk? People claiming to have answers for everyone else wore down my patience, leaving no space for listening.

People push back when I express my (now) natural state of non-attachment. “I bet you miss seeing your grandchildren?” a friend may say. “No,” I say, “but it was wonderful being with them.”

Three days ago, the Times Square Ball dropped, closing the door on 2019 and opening chapter #71 in the story of my life. Sure, I could die before it’s over, but the chances are that I’ll see another year, another smile, and another tear. So, it’s time to outline the next chapter, write in new characters, and add fascinating backdrops.

Discussing the plight of service workers with my friend, Becky, I shared what I’d learned from Kate Raworth’s book, that the stock market performance did not equate to better circumstances for low-paying employees. Becky wondered aloud (paraphrased), “if the well-paying factory jobs are not returning, how will these people’s well-being improve?”

When Tim and I moved into a 1,100ft2 flat in Colorado, it took some getting used to. Actually, it was frightening. Everywhere I looked, behind me, left, or right, there was my husband. “Tim,” I said, “this is not going to work.” Instead of agreeing—though surely he must— he said, “well, let’s see how it goes.”

Why do we cry? Sitting with a group of women, my friend, Ruth, commented on the recent impeachment hearings. She said that seeing women step up and speak to power brought tears to her eyes. The rest of us didn’t respond right away. We lacked the words to describe how her words affected us — a feeling plucking at our heartstrings.