7 Tips When Your Friend Has a Chronic Illness

Maybe this sounds like it should be common sense. People should just know, you say. But what if people weren’t raised well? Like me. What if they’re kind of feral and can be thoughtless and ill-mannered socially? Also me. Or what if someone is only beginning to examine their own ableism and would like to moveContinue reading “7 Tips When Your Friend Has a Chronic Illness”

The Wisdom of Humility

Today an Iranian friend called me humble. Coming from her, it was a profound compliment. It warmed my soul. But is it true? What is humility anyway? And why do some cultures value it and others, like mine, scoff at it? All I can do is put in my two cents. And here’s what IContinue reading “The Wisdom of Humility”

Reblog Friday: Ash Beckham

Because sometimes we all need a little help speaking our truth–and honoring the many truths of others. This Friday my shout-out goes to Ash Beckham for helping us straight people better understand the courage of coming out through acknowledging our own hard conversations. And why we need to have them anyway.

What Opens Us Up Makes Us Stronger

“Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity, and change.” Brene Brown I carry this in my pocket now. A few weeks back, I watched Brown’s TED talk “Listening to Shame.” It’s a good reminder–that playing it safe never gets you anywhere. Those places you resist going, the times you’re most terrified of falling flat onContinue reading “What Opens Us Up Makes Us Stronger”

Discomfort Required

I’m talking about the kind of discomfort that challenges us, by taking us exactly where we need to go. Audre Lorde, activist and writer, once wrote, “The severe abstinence of the ascetic…is one not of self-discipline but of self-abnegation.” When I read this at the age of 21, the ground shifted beneath my feet. WithContinue reading “Discomfort Required”

The Hardest Kind of Honesty

I tell lies. Whole packs of them. Mostly to myself, but I don’t think that in the least softens the crime. Because once I start to believe them, they get passed off on other people as truths. And then it just gets worse from there. But I don’t count fiction among my lies. Fiction, you’llContinue reading “The Hardest Kind of Honesty”

A Certain Kind of Beauty

“You have to smile like this,” and my friend gave a tight-lipped smile. “Like you’re not sure. And you have to keep your chin down at an angle, like this.” I was sitting across a cafe table from one of my oldest and dearest friends, who was generously giving me some pointers now that I’mContinue reading “A Certain Kind of Beauty”