[moh-muh nt]                                                                                                                      

noun:  an indefinitely short period of time; instant:


that moment when


moves in.


that moment when

forgiveness arrives

at last.


that moment when

the ugly duckling

sees the swan

that is her.


that moment when

life leaves.


that moment when

his eyes shift

from light to dark

and you realize

with dread

what it means.


that moment when

the new mother

is born.


that moment

when the silence screams.


that moment when


unlocks the gate.


that moment when




that moment when

you release the need to know why.


that moment when

you decide to say yes.


that moment when

you realize that the pain

is gone.


that moment when

joy returns.


that moment when

you finally understand.


that moment

when you acknowledge

that the only thing that matters is

this moment.


What a tasty morsel this moment is.

I Want A Refund

Dear Warranty Department of the Universe,

I am contacting you to resolve the matter of a broken body.  My parents purchased this body for me as a gift many years ago.  I understand that there is a lifetime warranty against defects in workmanship.  Well, this body doesn’t work right.  It has reactive airways and skin, a broken heating element, and faulty pain control.  When I use my body, it hurts.  These problems appear to be escalating.

I’ve invested a lot of time and money on upkeep and repairs for what I thought was supposed to be a quality product. I use premium fuel and I regularly bring it in for maintenance.  But it still doesn’t work as it should.  Had I known the troubles this body would generate, I would have contacted you sooner about your return policy.

I’m hoping that as a reputable manufacturer you will stand by your product and offer to fix this body once and for all as I have not gotten the use out of it that I thought I would.

Thank you for your consideration of this matter.

Sincerely yours,

An unsatisfied human



Dear unsatisfied human,

I am sorry to hear that you are unhappy with your body.  I can assure you that we, the Universe, do stand by our products.  We take pride in our wide variety of designs and exceptional quality of workmanship.

While you are correct that we offer a lifetime warranty, this applies only to defects in design. I see that the model that was purchased for you was our Basic Female version in white.  This model did not include the pain-free, blemish-free, odor-free, illness-free package.  That package was,unfortunately, a limited edition, cost-prohibitive extra, and has since been discontinued as it repeatedly failed to meet approval of our Quality Control Department.

I wish that I could offer you an exchange for a similar product, but it is our policy and practice to never duplicate a sale.  Our fine print states that The Universe, LLC cannot assume obligation or liability for consequential damages sustained in connection with either proper or improper use of our products.

Perhaps you’d be interested in our extended warranty program. It covers hair color, chin waxing, corrective lenses, protective undergarments and walking aids.  And we are currently running a promotion:  Buy a subscription for massages, chiropractic care, supplements, and doctor’s appointments for the remainder of the lifetime of your body and you will receive at least one day of pain relief.

Rest assured, Ms. Unsatisfied Human, that we, the Universe do value you as a customer and hope that you enjoy your body.  We appreciate your feedback and look forward to working with you in the coming years.


The Universe

Wake Up By Dreaming

dream1Husband indicated that we’d be having guests so I made a salad.  (A salad?)  It was unclear how many we’d be entertaining or when.  For some reason, I wasn’t privy to the details.

In this dream, when I opened the front door to my house and peered out into the dimly lit drive, I saw a line of people extending past the end of my street.  Some I knew well, others I recognized with the vaguest recall – a brief flash of a memory connected to a stranger’s face.  Each person wore a similarly jovial and strangely familiar affect as I welcomed him or her with a handshake.  They all seemed to be in on a secret that I hadn’t yet discovered.

There were thousands of people.  In typical dream fashion, they somehow fit in my house.  And all were eating a plate of salad from the one bowl I’d made, rather like the Bible story of the Fish and The Loaves.

This wacky scene unfolded bit by bit until I realized that I was in the midst of an after-party.  All of these people were actors in a production that I starred in.  It was called ‘Deb’s Life.’  By all accounts it was a smashing success.

My guests waxed on about their favorite parts and shared hearty laughter when recalling the outtakes.  The actors and I conversed with detached amusement as if My Life wasn’t real – at least not in the sense that I thought it was.

Here we were, looking every bit authentic in our human costumes, but devoid of the personalities that were connected to the characters we played.  It was a shocking revelation that Life, and the people in it, was just a drama – a series of events concocted for…what? Entertainment? Learning?

The one common thread was that each of the players in my story loved me.  They had been cast in my life by a legendary director and they cherished the chance to be a part of it.

Even the people with whom I had known only angst appeared now to be such close friends.  “I love you so much that I agreed to the role of aggressor,”  a man said.  “You were brilliant – the way you played the victim, and the way you overcame it!”

I began to see each person , each event, in symbolic terms, without emotion or judgment.  The friend who had betrayed me in Life embraced me now and I returned the gesture.  There was no need for apologies, for there was nothing to forgive.  Life, the show, had been perfectly executed.

The lesson in the dream was clear:  Life is an illusion, one that easily sucks you into the belief in its realness.  But things are never exactly as they seem.  Trials are not punishments, they are gifts.  And nothing , no one, is insignificant in this adventure.  The discoveries and contributions of every single life, no matter how large or small, difficult or easy, are added to the whole perfect picture.  Each soul has its place and purpose.  Each gives and receives to the others to create one big, beautiful, perpetual story.

“And so it comes to pass that each precious heart beats in all subsequent generations forevermore.”  – Mike Dooley

Oh, The Places We Go

In one week I am informed that two of my friends have cancer.  Another has died.  I’m at that age when really tough things happen at an increasing frequency – divorce, illness, death.  It’s happening all around me, but not currently to me.  So instead of the drama of utter despair, I have the luxury of a more detached melancholy.   A friend’s cancer reality will not change my day to day life, but it does change my view of the world.

Allowing myself to go to ‘that place’ – the deep fear place where the world is unsafe – is a slippery slope.  I fear I will be swallowed up by demons of all kinds and never climb out.  But go, I do, because it pulls me in.

I see myself sitting before God with childlike eyes and grown-up concerns.  I throw no tantrum, nor even ask for help.  I simply sit.  No questions come.  Perhaps because I know there is no answer – at least not one that I will understand or agree with.

All of my beliefs and convictions about life are pulled out of me and laid on a virtual table before me.  I sort through them, easily discarding those that suddenly, no longer have value.  Like the one that makes me floss every day and fret over the dirt on the floor.  The rest of the pieces I re-arrange, trying to make them fit together.  These trinkets are an awkward excuse for a belief system.

My child sitting beside me calls to me from what seems like a distance.  I catch myself daydreaming and scoop up the pieces scattered in my mind, tucking them away in a safe place.  I will examine them again, perhaps later, when the kids are in bed and my confidant comes home.

For now, I will continue my superfluous day wearing a new set of glasses.  Not the rose-colored ones, nor the sunglasses.  Today, I see clearly, almost too clearly – like when the eye doctor adds drops to your eyes that dilate them.  If only I could block out the light.  This new vision is just too much.

One week later, I return to a more comfortably numb state of being.  The “meaning of Life and Death” is not in every sip of coffee anymore.  My normal, slightly cloudy, vision is back.  I walk down the street called “My Life”.  It is flat terrain for now.  But I can’t help looking  back to see what it was that I kept tripping on.  And to be sure that whatever it was, is not following me.

Calendars, Cops, and Country Singers

When my online calendar gave me the following alert, “Caution!  There are conflicts in your schedule.” I paused, briefly.  No kidding, I thought.  Two working parents, three kids in sports, an aging dog, doctors and dentists appointments for all….There are bound to be a few conflicts in the schedule.  Until I figure out how to invent time or bi-locate, those conflicts are going to have to learn to co-exist.

This week marked the beginning of a mind-numbing schedule full of activities and appointments that are all essential (according to their participants.)  I sometimes envision my online calendar with a life of its own – like the 1970s sci-fi movies about smart computers taking over humanity.  It appears as if I enter one item and it magically multiplies until the once neat white/gray grid is eclipsed in a wall of red.

Joking aside, I’m well-aware of my responsibility in creating this mess.  I’ve given too many yes’ and not enough no’s – clearly.  But like many things in life, if you think too much about decisions before making them, you get stuck in the details and never move forward.  So, I say yes without having any idea how I will manage the details.  A clever man – aka husband – once said, “we’ll never be able  to afford kids on paper but somehow it all works out.”  So far, he’s right.

Darryl Worley advises,

Sounds like life to me plain old destiny

You gotta hold on tight just enjoy the ride

Get used to all this unpredictability

Sounds like life.

I’ve surrendered to this somewhat comforting outlook on life.  Which is why, when asked to be a home-stay volunteer for an out-of-town student group this weekend, I gave a sincere ‘yes.’  Might be fun – after the extra cleaning, (i.e. gutting and fumigating a child’s bedroom), food shopping, and juggling of carpools.

So why take on so much?  Truth is, I love being busy.  The ‘busy’ reminds me that I am abundant.  I am needed.   Taylor Swift points out, “Life makes love look hard.”  Love takes work and patience and time.  But someday, when I look at my kids’ healthy, straight teeth, I’ll forget the umpteen trips to the orthodontist and the endless arguments about brushing and flossing.  When I hear them tell stories about the time they scored a goal or broke a bone, I’ll forget the rushing around from one sports field to the next.    I’m willing to bet that Trace Adkins is correct in predicting, “I’m gonna miss this.” 

For now, I have to keep a sense of humor and hope that those around me will do the same.  Like when the police officer pulled me over and asked, “Ma’am, do you know how fast you were going?” I replied with a definitive, “Yes, I do.  Very fast.  Would you like to see my calendar?”

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