April 27, 2019

March 28, 2019

We sometimes get calls at work to be on standby for a trauma one from EMS or lifeflight. And it doesn't ever come in. It gets canceled. The OR can go back to business as usual and the trauma surgeon can proceed with the next case. 

And there at the other end of the call, a nurse or a paramedic, probably covered in blood and sweat, is telling a family that their lives will never be the same. Somebody's life just ended and the entire world around them will be forever shifted. 


Traumatic deaths remind me every time of how fragile our days are. How lucky we are to have them. How quickly things can shift. Traumatic survivals remind me what is real and necessary and important in life. It is a filter for the unnecessary. For excess. 

A man a year out from his wife's Traumatic injury told me this week how her severe injuries and time in the ICU turned her inward, made her reevaluate her life and her self and her priorities. But for him and his sons, it pulled them toward each other. It erased for him all the triggers for fights that he used to think were important. He realized what was trivial. He is gentler. He lost his taste for argument.  He learned the actual depth and strength of his family. 

Tragedy surrounds us. Sometimes it feels like it engulfs us. Sometimes it feels like a rising storm that will never abate. But in all of this, there is, to me, a great sense of calm. A sense of the importance of living life while we have the chance, and of knowing that someday when it is shaken or broken or ended, it will somehow be okay. 

January 24, 2019

Big Black Car

Mary Oliver recently died. It's a sad loss for poetry. She was one of my first five. Richard Shelton. Sherman Alexi. Mary Oliver. Billy Collins. That one poem by Stephen Dunn about when his friend died. The part from his own that kept running through my mind after she died:

There were so many men then. I wasn't a feminist yet. I didn't know that the world of writers was dominated by men, especially white men, and that one day I would find that disheartening and disconcerting. I only knew that I liked Mary Oliver okay and that Ashley loved her. But what I came to realize over time was that while I loved poetry, the best poetry for me would often be put to music. Lyrics would often be what I found most moving. 

So today in honor of poetry. I'm going to post a poetic and beautiful song. My favorite lines are highlighted. 

Big Black Car

You were a phonograph, I was a kid
I sat with an ear close, just listening
I was there when the rain tapped her way down you face
You were a miracle I was just holding your space
Well time has a way of throwing it all in your face
The past, she is haunted, the future is laced
Heartbreak, you know, drives a big black car

Swear I was in the back seat, just minding my own
And through the glass, the corn crows come like rain
They won’t stay, they won’t stay
For too long now
This could be all that we know
Of love and all
Well you were a dancer and I was a rag
The song in my head, well was all that I had
Hope was a letter I never could send
Well love was a country we couldn’t defend
And through the carnival we watch them go round and round
All we knew of home was just a sunset and some clowns
Well you were a magazine, I was a plain jane
Just walking the sidewalks all covered in rain
Love to just get into some of your stories
Me and all of my plain jane glory
Just me and all of my plain jane glory
Songwriters: Gregory Alan Isakov

January 5, 2019

Atlas Shrugged

This book has been on my to-read shelf for quite a while. Little did I know that Ayn Rand perfectly described anxiety in 1957. On the first page of the book. So that's promising. 

January 4, 2019

Free Solo

This movie was every bit as stressful and beautiful as you might expect. This is me and my scooter waiting on the ramp outside for Alta to come get me so I didn't have to do snowy steps because, unlike Alex Honnold, I do not like to take unnecessary risks. 

Don't worry, the stark contrast did not go unnoticed in my brain. 

Paper Airplanes

From My, My, My, My, My by Tara Hardy

(You may buy the book here)

Take that thing that happened. To you.
Open it like a concealed rose. Hold it up
to the nose of someone else. Let them
tell you that you still smell sweet. So

sweet. Let that person who loves you pluck
petals out of the gully of your wound. Let
her shave them into points and sail them
back into your heart like paper airplanes.


My little man from years ago and I made paper airplanes together often. I recently purchased small paper airplane temporary tattoos from Spirit Ink  as a way to honor him, recently turned ten years old. And now they can have an extra special meaning. 

October 7, 2018

When you get a biographical fortune

It's basically a line out of my Meyers Briggs

September 18, 2018


Just a friendly reminder that my dog moves my shoes to wherever she is while I'm at work. Because she needs something to cuddle with.