The Whole Truth

Do you solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

Oath for Sworn Testimony

I never thought deeply about what it meant to tell the whole truth until I heard a song from the movie A Man Called Otto.

I will tell you the whole truth … There is so much I want you to know.

Til You’re Home, Rita Wilson

There is so much I want people to know so why don’t I tell the whole truth? The more I have thought about it, I usually withhold the whole truth because I’m protecting others—both the guilty and my listeners. I have wondered if women are wired to protect others or if we’ve been taught.

A woman once said that she had been urged to seek counsel and to “not protect anyone.” I found that profound.

You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should’ve behaved better.

Anne Lamott, Bird By Bird

Truth is hard, I don’t take it lightly when people tell me their truth, even if it’s not the whole truth.

Telling? Protecting?




The Blessing of Photography Pt.2

Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever … It remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.

Aaron Siskind

When I visited my college campus last year, the place held little meaning. So many changes had been made since my graduation that I could not retrace my college steps from my dorm to the cafeteria or library.

Weeks later, my brother texted 1970s photos that depicted the place I remembered. As I looked at photo after photo of where I slept, ate, studied, and made friends while an undergraduate, emotions hidden in my heart rose to the surface.

Later that night, I decluttered papers on my desk and found an article about Christopher Lawing, who photographed old signs from buildings in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Our State March 2023) Viewers told him about rekindled memories and feelings as they gazed on their childhood icons.

May God bless the photographers who help us remember and reminisce.

* May is National Photography Month

Homeschooling, Parenting, Relationships

None of My Business

The most important advice I would give my younger writer self is what I’d give my younger woman self: What other people think of you is none of your business.

Anne Lamott, author

I’ve read this quote multiple times, and it still hits me the same way. “Of course” followed by “No way.”

I eventually have to remember that seeking advice and seeking approval are not the same. While I may need counsel, if I don’t need approval, then I don’t need to know if I have obtained it.

In the past, other’s opinions have paralyzed me or led me off course. Realizing that another’s approval or disapproval—of my parenting or my homeschooling or other aspects of my lifestyle—is none of my business is freeing.

These days, if I suspect my writing or actions will upset someone, I try to remember “What other people think of me is none of my business.”

Thank you, Anne.


Occupation? Being a Friend

Make new friends but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold.

Joseph Parry(1841-1903)

My days are filled with differing amounts of dribs and drabs. The major ones are seeing friends and neighbors, phone calls, tutoring, teaching, and many types of writing—although by definition, dribs and drabs are never major.

By moving from project to project, I don’t feel like I’ve accomplished anything by the end of the day. I might if I taught all day or wrote all day or made phone calls all day or was paid to do any of my dribs and drabs.

I like my variety, and I don’t want to be paid for what I do, but what do I the during the day? I asked my husband once after feeling like I had wasted a day.

You are a friend.

I like that label. The next time I am asked, “What do you do during the day?” I hope I remember to say “I am a friend.”

The most I can do for my friend is simply to be his friend.

Henry David Thoreau

God's Faithfulness

Turbulence Ahead

I fear flying. While returning from my grandfather’s funeral, I consoled myself with the fact that I’d only have to make one more flight—to my grandmother’s funeral. Seventeen years later, I’ve made at least twenty round trips, each dreaded.

Two weeks ago, as I awaited takeoff, the pilot announced, “Turbulence ahead. Most likely the whole way.” As the plane jolted its way through the air, I was undisturbed. Why? Both air traffic control and the pilots knew what to expect. If they were undeterred, why should I worry?

A previous pilot warned, “We’re about to land, and we’ll bump ourselves all the way to the ground.” Again, the warning kept me from being alarmed.

Why couldn’t I always be warned about severe turbulence, not only in the air but in my life? If only God would announce, “Turbulence ahead.”

And then I remembered Jesus’s words.

In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.

John 16:33 (ESV)

Even more than air traffic control and pilots who made take-off and landing decisions, Jesus knew whatever lay ahead was under his control. Why should I worry?

Turbulence ahead.