No tags :(

Share it

praying manthis can

This praying mantis was on my front porch the morning after I returned home, a reminder of all of you who prayed or thought about us while we’ve been away. Can I just start by saying thank you?


I just spent two solid weeks with my mother. We’re very compatible, probably because we’re not so much alike that we bang heads, but we’re similar enough that our basic needs are the same.

What sustained us both during my Dad’s big health event were two shared requirements: prayer and clean bathrooms. When we weren’t praying ourselves, we remembered all the people who were praying for our family. That’s an unrivaled spiritual comfort, unless you consider its closest kin, an immaculate public restroom where you can freshen up and potty.

I can’t be the only girl whose first memorable lesson on good citizenship was learning how to pee in a public toilet without touching any surface. To this day, I credit my strong quadriceps to Mom’s instructions for safe use of a public restroom.

Those lessons are so firmly embedded that all my stops on long-distance trips are governed by which exits have the cleanest restrooms. If you’re traveling west of Indianapolis on I-70 or south of Effingham, Illinois on I-57, call me. I give free restroom reviews.

As for my Dad, things are looking up. On the way home from the rehab hospital, he asked to stop at a guitar store to check out a new feature on a Gibson guitar. He and a 20-something rocker/guitarist/clerk carried on a lengthy conversation that was way over my head. Leaning on a walker, he was ageless and invincible, lost in his love.

If he listened to those of us who didn’t want him to gamble on an elective surgery, he would still be hobbling around, barely able to walk a few yards. Instead, it looks like he’s on his way to recovering a better way of life. It’s proof positive that, no matter how much we love someone, we don’t always know what’s best for them.

Don’t you love it when someone takes a risk or makes a difficult choice and comes out better for it? What was your first significant (or trivial) lesson in good citizenship?

Life is short. Wear the good stuff.

Pinkpinkshirt copy

P.S. I’m still riffing on the ruffled-blouse-with-trousers look. The blouse is Lands End. The trousers, J. Crew. Nothing vintage here except me.