Of Walls and Dreams

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I am 30-years-old and have worked close to 20 professional jobs in my life. I have done it all – from assisting golfers to educating the homeless to refilling paper towel holders for $5.45 an hour (which, I should add, practically made me homeless). Despite all of the hours that employment consumed in my young adult life, I always found that it kept me humble and motivated me to study harder.

When I graduated with my first master’s in 2008, I could think of no better way to drain my bank account than to have my new degree, as well as my bachelor’s, professionally framed. You see, these two pieces of paper were more than simple accolades – they were physical reminders of the youth that I sacrificed for a better life.

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If You Take a Child to a Christmas Party

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It was one of those moments that makes you question your ability to parent your own child. My son, clearly in distress, was scratching his tongue. Our family was enjoying the festivities of our first holiday party of the season, and I had practiced great care in preparing my son a plate of hors d’oeuvres.

I’ll admit that I was a little more than excited when I saw something green. My son loves bell peppers, and the stove offered up a dish of stuffed pepper slices. I grabbed two. What better way to balance a toddler meal of mostly corn chips and crackers?

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A Sticky Catharsis

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It all started with a hoodie and my son’s unyielding refusal to remove it from his head. The day, which began like so many others, quickly evolved into a battle of wills. With our son we have learned that attitudes and physical discomfort go hand-in-hand, but, at least in this case, there was no external sign of illness.

We made his final preparations for preschool and silently offered a prayer for his teachers.

[Interlude]

As soon as I pulled into our garage after school that day, my son dashed to the backyard, grabbed the largest stick he could hold, and began hitting a nearby tree with all of the force his svelte body could muster. His hoodie may have been the color of ashes, but there was clearly a fire burning within my child.

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A Holiday Fast

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This year for Thanksgiving, I felt compelled to undertake a 3-day social media cleanse. It was an experiment of sorts to understand how the impacts of Facebook, news media, and even this blog shape my relationships and overall emotional state. Earlier this fall, I confronted my own addiction and was hopeful that a Thanksgiving fast would prepare my heart for the holiday season. In truth, I originally sought for my information purge to last an entire week, but I am a scholar rooted in reality – I actually wanted to meet my goal.

What changed?

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