Of Sciatica, Garcinia Cambogia and As Best as I Can Remember …

Throughout the time of our youngest daughter being in Japan I experienced an incredibly painful bout of sciatica, the most difficult in the recent past experiences. Normally it erupts following an extremely strenuous session of exercise.

But I have not been exercising to keep me weight down, rather


Of Ambivalence, Epiphanies, and Sonnets of Compassion …

Despite all that I endured with my mother under her care, or lack of it, I was never ambivalent about my ability to love.

Even in the worst of times during my childhood, and while undergoing the nightmare of relationship with my mother, it has always seemed the easiest thing to love, the hardest to mistreat and push away, speak harshly to.

I cannot imagine being to my children as my


Of Rules, Quilts, A Coat of Many Colors, and Knowing …

My mother was a stickler for rules. They seemed to give her a sense of safety.

I cannot say that I hate rules. I certainly do not like the way those in power misuse and bend them to punish those over whom they seek to maintain control.

I do not know that my mother misused rules. This is a comforting revelation. She was fair.

She did what she said and promised, even if the consequences she warned of involved excessive force or could be considered abusive.

I am not trying to protect my mother from the part of me that she hurt, the aspects


Of Memoir, Climax, and “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother”…

Writing teacher and mentor, Clive Matson, always said that if a writer found her or himself wanting and/or needing to explain her or his story that the reader might gain the author’s intended message, the author needed to revise their story further.

Completing a manuscript requires more than simply writing the story, editing and revising it for clarity regarding grammar and typos, or even for development of plot.

Within each story or novel lives the narrative of that story, and how it came into being.

The author’s understanding and exploration of this process informs


Of Alice Miller, Amy Chua, and Parenting as a Way of Growth and Transformation…

A beneficiary of the Civil Rights Era, I entered integration in third grade carrying with me the missive delivered to many middle-class African-American children around the country: “Integration [of schools] offers an opportunity to work even harder. You may sit next to white students, but you will need to prove yourself. You will need to work hard and be better at all that you do.”

While my mother and father loathed slothfulness and laziness, this missive added pressure to an already weighty responsibility.

The result has been that I, like many African-Americans of my age and social class are and continue to be over achievers.

The concept of always giving your


Radio Show | Mary Johnson

Mary Johnson discusses her newly released memoir, An Unquenchable Thirst, wherein she describes two decades of spiritual service as a nun with the Missionaries of Charity founded by Mother Teresa in Calcutta, India.


Of The Military Industrial Complex, Sarah Palin, and Unconditional Love…

I recently read an article on the Huffington Post entitled, Why You’re Not Married.
The author, a TV writer, Tracy McMillan, whose credits include, Mad Men, The United States of Tara, and a memoir, I Love You and I’m Leaving You Anyway offers 6 reasons why the reader, who if unmarried and wishes to be, remains single.

Without belaboring the point of what caught my attention, let me say that reasons 2-6 constitute a repeat of what many articles assert.

And despite the, shall we say, blunt and directness of reason #1, the truth it held forced me, a wife of 29 years, to stop in gratitude after overcoming the initial shock of McMillan’s wording, or more precisely, her word.

“The problem is not men. It’s you. Sure, there are lame men out there, but


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