When Mother's Day is Just A Day

 It's an odd feeling, really.

The day used to take up so much space in my life. There were plans to be made and coordinated. When my brother lived nearby he and his wife hosted both sets of parents for events like Mother's Day so I focused on bringing my part of the lunch.

And, of course finding the right gift and card.  

After my brother and sister-in-law moved out of state, the hosting duties became mine. I enjoyed planning the lunch. Cleaning the house to Geraldine standards? Not so much.

Odd that a day that took up so much space in my life is now just a day.

Maybe you know the feeling. Maybe your mom has died, or maybe dementia has steadily slipped her away from the life you shared together. And Sunday will be oddly empty.

For other women there's more pain than emptiness. It's the first year without your mom. Or the first year since the terrible reality became real to you, and you know that you will never have a son or daughter making macaroni jewelry (is that still a...

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Let me explain to you what you really meant.

Early in my career I was on the board of a new organization. Our subcommittee was wrestling with a particularly thorny problem. I spoke out against the solution offered, feeling that it didn't go far enough to address the need. A man on the committee (he was in the "oil bidness") immediately discounted my objection. I didn't know what I was talking about.

No one else spoke.

As a result the committee chair presented our original proposal to the entire group who immediately protested that it didn't go far enough in addressing the need. Gee, where had I heard that before?

When we took a break I saw the organization leader walking with my oil bidness  friend. The two men were talking intently, the leader explaining why the proposal didn't go far enough and the oil man nodding as if he'd never heard that objection before.

And maybe he hadn't.

Of course, there's nothing extraordinary about my story. Gather together a circle of women and you'll hear stories of being overlooked,...

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When Church Walls Come Tumbling Down

I've been thinking a lot about place recently.

The church in which I grew up (First Baptist, Winston-Salem), the one in which I was baptized and the congregation who ordained me announced that they were voting upon a plan to tear down two of the three buildings of their downtown campus, keeping only the sanctuary building  with its rooms and offices. 

From my father's files I have the booklets for the capital campaign that raised the money to build those buildings fifty odd years ago. They touted the beauty of a chapel, the recreation possibilities of a gym, the community-building areas of children's space and a fellowship hall and kitchen.

But that was fifty odd years ago and not all of the years have been kind. The cost of bringing the space  up to speed is prohibitive, much less undertaking a full blown and needed renovation... not to mention cost of utilities. The church faced a choice of adopting as their core ministry sustaining the buildings or of channeling...

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