Category: Life Lessons

I’m hungover.


I’m hungover. Except I haven’t had a drink almost 3 months. My head is pounding and I’m dizzy and nauseous as if it was 1999 and last night I chased a bottle of strawberry Boone’s Farm with 10 Natty Lights. I stagger to the shower. Shower. Towel off. Get changed. Get coffee, started feeling sorry […]

The Joy of Watching My Son Discover Rock n’ Roll You can't start a fire without a spark...


A few weeks ago my 8 year-old son, Chase, dressed up as Bruce Springsteen for a school project. Ever since, he hasn’t stopped listening to Springsteen. Here’s a video of him flossing to “Dancing in the Dark”. My parents taught me that music, is as good as any subject, to bond with your child. Growing […]

The Danger of Not Telling Your Story


As a writer and a person with a degenerative brain condition, I often tumble into a state of what-will-they-say-about-me paranoia. A state where you hold your breath as you wrestle with the sinking feeling of eternal doom. What has helped me breathe and escape such doom is telling my story. I’ve learned that showing who […]

The morning after a neurologist found my brain damage I went to work. The story of the blue collar patient


Cindy told me to stay home. Put my feet up. Watch daytime television. Rest. But I insisted on going to work. “I have too much work to do.” I was teaching Cormac McCarthy’s novel The Road. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, the novel chronicles a father-son relationship and argues a father’s chief duty, no matter […]

26 things I tell myself when I’m struggling


            To my friend, who thinks no one understands…we understand. “This too shall pass.” (King Solomon) “There bad moments. But there are no bad days.” “Beyond this mountain is another mountain.” (Haitian Proverb) “Sometimes it’s okay to be selfish.” “Somewhere, someone has endured much worse.” “Look hard enough until you […]

Life favors the brave


A student writes a fantastic piece of how their grandfather use to take them fishing on summer mornings. How standing on the bank, listening to the lake lap against the shore, under the morning sun they found peace. A peace they could not find anywhere else. Then winter turns and their grandfather dies. They write […]

I’ve come to suspect that all parents are frauds.


This week a student told me I must be the world’s greatest dad. I laughed. “What makes you believe that?” “Because you always seem to have a great answer for every question.” Flattered, sure, but there’s a big difference at being good English teacher and being a parent. Teaching literature and writing is easy.  Parenting […]

Having a hole in your brain isn’t all terrible. Learning to make the best of your misfortunes


Having a hole in your brain isn’t all terrible. Dare I say I’m grateful for having the opportunity to endured such a misfortune. For I’ve learned my attitude about such stark truth is simply a matter of perspective. Like this one time when I was having a PET scan– which tests for Multiple Sclersosis. I […]

Your life is a story. For my friend, a hero...who is lost.


Your life is a story. A story played by three familiar characters: The hero The hero is brave and courageous. Not always but on most days they try.  The hero embraces their weaknesses and vulnerability. They pursue passions. And listen. And forgive. They enjoy people. Talking and laughing and shouldering life with people.  The hero, […]

It was both funny and painful to watch. "Everything hurts."


Three days after the race and Cindy is walking as if she has a pair of wooden legs. “Everything hurts. My legs, my back, my ribs.” I stand at the kitchen sink and watch Cindy open the cabinet, reach for a glass, and wince. She draws a breath. “I should’ve trained for the race.” She […]