What’s One Thing Your Child Should Never Do? Here’s The Answer.

My daughter, Evi, and I watched Little Women this past weekend. It’s been on our must-see list for a while. On Saturday, we set aside an evening for mommy/daughter movie night. We snuggled on the couch, pulled two comfy throws over our laps, and started the film.

I didn’t know if my girl, who’s ten, could follow the storyline but I was willing to take a chance. I wanted to introduce her to this classic story of the March sisters. From the very first scene, Evi was completely engaged in the lives of Jo, Amy, Meg, and Beth.

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The Truth About A Conversation With My Mom

Early last week, I found a recording that I’d forgotten about. It’s a conversation I had with my mother when I was a freshman in college. I wanted to hear what my mom shared on that cassette tape, so I ordered a cassette player on Amazon.

It felt like Christmas when the package arrived! I opened the box and smiled at the bubblegum pink color I’d chosen. I carefully placed the tape inside the player and hit the play button.

Mom passed away in 2016, so it was emotional to hear her speak. She talked about wanting to live long enough to see that I could make it on my own. Then, she said, “I think I’ve lived that long because I feel that you could take care of yourself. I think I’ve brought you up to that point. For you, I want everything to be good and for you to never be unhappy, but that’s unrealistic, isn’t it?”

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Will They Still Call Me Mom? For The Parent Struggling to Say, “You’re Adopted”

How and when do I tell my child that they’re adopted? This is a question I receive from parents who often feel panic inside as they grapple with the and how of sharing a truth that must be shared. Mothers and fathers may fear their child’s response to this truth. Will they still love me? Will they be angry? Will they still call me Mom/Dad?

Parents lose sleep over worrying about if this conversation needs to occur. There’s uncertainty in the outcome and an ever-present longing to stop the passing of time. If I could just freeze this moment and avoid the inevitable!

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It Wasn’t Meant to Be, by Lyndsay Wilkin

I walked into the children’s receiving home with my husband that crisp fall morning six-and-a-half years ago, my heart galloping in my chest. This was the day we were going to meet our children for the first time. Our social worker told us about them only the day before, and we hadn’t seen pictures or received much information. All I knew was a two-year-old boy and his six-month-old half-sister waited for my husband and me somewhere in that sterile government building. Waited for us to scoop them up and take them to safety and be their forever Mommy and Daddy. That was what my galloping heart pounded out, loud and clear and urgent.

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Your Big, Beautiful Story: A 3-Step Technique To Help You Live It

“If I don’t give this work my all, I’m stealing from those who need my message the most.” It was a seismic shift in my mindset! Moving from being apprehensive to share my story to being 100% determined to share my story, and doing everything possible to make that happen.

It feels like, in the world today, we are prone to devalue our stories—our big, beautiful, important stories. In other words, I think we too easily lean toward silencing our voices. We tell ourselves that we don’t have anything important to say. What could someone like me possibly have to offer?

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The Look of Love, by Andie Coston

“I would get too attached.”

It’s the most common hard pass excuse we hear as foster parents or social workers.

It’s been overused as an excuse and as a blog topic. As a foster parent, you can now Google for well-crafted snarky responses to this lame excuse for not wanting to foster. We ALL know now that it is an excuse. That people who “get too attached” are exactly what we are looking for in foster parents. We all know that they just don’t want to step out of their comfort zones and into positively participating in changing the trajectory of children and bio parent’s lives.

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Life: Why It’s Worth the Journey

“There are a million reasons why people feel broken.” This comment, shared in an email, caused me to sit back in my chair and reflect for several minutes.

“Are there really a million reasons why people can find themselves shattered and on the floor?” I asked. “That seems overwhelming….”

My friend replied, “There are people who grew up in stable, but unloving homes. People abandoned in marriage. People who never found love. People rejected for all sorts of reasons that have left them feeling worthless.”

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The Blessings of a Scar, by David Michael Barnett

Scars are signatures of painful events in the life of our bodies. They are a reminder that informs us that we are not always in control of our lives. I have many scars. Scars on my hands from bee stings received while playing hide and seek; a scar on the lower right side of my abdomen created by a surgeon’s scalpel to remove an angry appendix; and a scar on my left arm as a result of being “cleated” while playing football.

Of all my scars, I have a favorite, the scar on my left knee. When I was almost three years old, I was running through the house and tripped and fell on my sister’s toy sewing machine. It was made from metal and had a sharp edge on the base. The gash was severe, and the blood began to flow. My father took a sheet, began ripping it, and wrapped my knee to stop the bleeding. What I remember most was sitting in his lap with my mummified leg, being comforted by his big hands. I will never forget his hands. Those hands are forever etched into my memory as a visual reminder of my father’s love.

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The Transformational Power of Service

I host a podcast called Greater Than. I started this project to explore how people rise above tremendous challenges and find a greater way of being—discovering a purpose and a calling beyond their wildest dreams.

I’ve learned so much from listening to the stories of others who have gone through the toughest of times and, on the other side of pain, have uncovered the true meaning of life: serving.

When we look around us, as we approach the closing out of 2019, it seems that society has lost its way in the area of service. Greatness is viewed as having more than the next person: more accolades, more money, more strength, more power, more status. Greatness has never been about these things.

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Still Standing: A Conversation on Life as a Trans-Racial Adoptee, with Kevin Hofmann

Kevin Hofmann is the author of the memoir, Growing Up Black In White. He is a trans-racial adoptee who describes his experience as “a unique way to grow up.” His family was part of the second wave of multicultural families created through transracial adoption, in late sixties America, with no role models to guide them.

We begin our conversation with Kevin taking us back to Michigan and the racial temperature into which he was born. He terms it, inside his memoir, as being born in “the middle of a racial hurricane.”

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