Poetry Sunday

Photo by Alex Boyd on Unsplash

The moon slips soft between
the clouds and I
slip soft into my bed
where empty space
matches the shape
of you, and I
lay down my head
to fall to restless sleep
now dreaming
that I am kissing you

The moon slips quiet through
the night to keep
vigil over you, and I
wake to tangled sheets
from dreaming
and into the darkness
breathe a sigh
as I wait for sleep
and watch the moon
from windows open
to the star-lit sky.

The moon slips gently from my
sight, as the sun warms
the sky in pastel hues, and…

Photo by sergio souza on Unsplash

Most of us can easily recognize flawed dating patterns in other people, particularly on social media. We watch their relationships begin, see their pictures, read their status updates, and then we watch them fall apart in memes, quotes, and markedly fewer loved-up selfies. We often see the signs, and we might even have predicted that ending just from our own distant observations. It’s easy to see, right?

But seeing these flawed patterns in ourselves? Not so much.

We really need to stop dating our unresolved issues.

I’m seeing this with the benefit of hindsight, but I sure did spend a…

Photo by Haley Lawrence on Unsplash

I’ve never considered myself fearful.

Even as a child, I was borderline reckless with my bravery. There was no tree I was afraid to climb or height I was afraid to go to. If someone told me I couldn’t do something, I was definitely going to try to do it. No dare was too terrifying for the likes of me, and if Hogwarts had invited me to attend, I would have certainly been sorted into Gryffindor.

I had bravado, but I’ve come to learn just how fearful I was beneath it. Even now, I hate to admit how much…

Photo by Cristian Newman on Unsplash

I have a temper. It’s something I work on, but it’s not something I try to hide. I talk openly about having one and how I try to control it or, at the very least, express it appropriately. I used to know rage well — and not just the road variety either. My anger comes out less these days, but not because I don’t feel it. Every day, there’s a fresh news story reminding me that people, women in particular, have plenty of reasons for rage.

But what I’ve found interesting over the years is that my anger when unleashed…

Protect your time and energy, but keep an open heart.

Photo by Alice Alinari on Unsplash

Guard your heart. It’s common advice. I just don’t want to do it anymore. The very term guarding implies a threat and conveys fear. It’s instinctive to want to protect ourselves after a broken heart, but healing hearts need to be open ones if we ever want to move past the pain. I’d much rather invest my energy in connecting with others rather than protecting my heart.

I still have moments where it’s hard to believe I’m single again and back on yet another dating app. I want chemistry and connection, and there’s nothing wrong with that. I just thought…

Here’s the ugly truth no one is talking about

Photo by Myles Tan on Unsplash

I have nightmares almost every night. I’ve had them since I started working on past trauma in therapy. No one tells you about this when you start. To be fair, my therapist warned me that it could have an emotional impact, but I didn’t know this was what she meant. I wasn’t prepared for the frequency of the nightmares or just how hard they hit me.

I also didn’t expect wave after wave of memories hitting me at the most inopportune times. I had triggers before, but this is next level. My son was trying on rings in my room…

It’s your responsibility to manage, not others’ responsibility to remove.

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I have strongly mixed feelings about policing other people’s social media content. I certainly see the value of pointing out racist, sexist, or other discriminatory content. It’s important to point this out when we see it, but lately, I’ve been seeing posts asking for compassion in our content based on other people’s triggers.

The recovery community does this often. I’ve seen posts asking people who drink not to post photos or status updates normalizing alcohol consumption, lest it trigger someone recovering from addiction. I recently saw a post asking those who post about fitness not to post related statistics because…

A strategy to manage parenting stress

Photo by Some Tale on Unsplash

So often, we think of time out as a strategy for dealing with misbehaving children rather than a way for parents to cope with their own emotions. If we’re advocates of gentle parenting, timeout is an excellent alternative to corporal punishment, but it’s usually applied directly to our offspring. I’ve even heard it applied to our children’s toys. For example, we can take a particular toy and place it in time out as a consequence. These strategies often work.

But what happens when we, as parents, are the ones who need a break?

I often speak to single parents because…

What our bodies may be telling us

Photo by William Randles on Unsplash

I lay down for a short nap, and it feels like a weight is pressing my body into the mattress. I’m flat on my back — not my normal sleeping position, but the thought of moving is overwhelming. I’m simply too tired to manage it.

I’ve realized that I am prone to depression. It’s a more recent development — or perhaps just a more recent realization. Before it begins, I feel off. It’s hard to describe, but everything feels strange, off-kilter. My body doesn’t feel right. My energy disappears, and I feel exhausted every day, all day. I feel close…

Crystal Jackson

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