If we were having coffee today, I’d tell you how glad I am to be meeting in a coffee shop for the first time in months. It’s so good for me to spend time here, at a place that reminds me how it feels to be Deborah-as-Deborah, taking a break from being Deborah-as-mom, Deborah-as-wife, Deborah-as-worker, Deborah-as-commuter, or any of the other roles I play. Here at the coffee shop, I get to just be for a while. I like coffee, but this is way better than coffee.
That’s enough about me for now. What have you been up to? What’s been on your mind?
After listening and interjecting questions, I’d tell you that I thought I had nothing to say when I climbed into my car this morning. My week was fairly quiet. I’d tell you how I realized as I drove that plenty has transpired–much of it in my internal world–since we last met. Read more…
decided to give up
his teddy bears and TV
(While not Catholic,
most his friends are.
Also, truck videos
and Sara Bareilles
I, too, am
for now, though
I am not Catholic.
I am giving up
eating the junk
that’s left me feeling
run-down and tired
after eight months
of failing to refrain
over and over again.
But the taste!
Maybe I could have
just one beer?
Almost as soon
as the thought
crept into my brain,
thoughts of Lent
and said “No, thanks.
Not today, or tomorrow,”
I had to give up something important to me to fully experience something even more important.
My teeth, my name.
My mom, my love.
I am not Catholic,
but I am giving up
things I enjoy for
I don’t need to be Catholic
to be glad to have
by its members’ acts,
that I am losing nothing;
I am simply choosing
to trade one sweet thing
in pursuit of another,
ever so much
I leapt off my couch when I heard clattering at my mailbox yesterday. I hoped I’d see my family’s beloved mailman, R, who’s been away recuperating from surgery for several weeks.
I’ve missed the twinkling in his eyes as he interrupts a phone call to say hello to my little boys and ask how they’re doing. I’ve missed the warmth in his voice and the wave he throws over his shoulder as he continues on to other homes and other hearts.
As a little girl, I excitedly peered out my living room window for signs of the mail truck, hoping I’d get mail from a pen pal or my Big Sister. Since R became my mailman, I’ve been much more excited by who is delivering the mail than what might come in it. R delivers even more kindness than junk mail, which astonishes me when I consider just how much junk mail I drop unopened into my recycling bin daily.
I pushed open my screen door and peeked out. Oh. A woman about my age gazed curiously at me. Read more…
Yesterday, my younger son pointed at a picture on the wall above our dining room table and said, “Grandma!”
“Yes, that’s your grandma. And that’s your great-grandma, and your great-grandpa.”
“I want to meet my grandpa!” exclaimed my older son. I grimaced, for a moment.
“You can’t meet him, sadly,” I told Li’l D.
“Why? Is he dead?” he asked.
“Yes. But Daddy could take you to visit his grave, if you’d like. You could talk to him there.”
Li’l D shook his head aggressively. “No. No, thank you.”
I paused for a moment, wondering if I should mention you, another of his grandpas. “Well, my dad is still alive, but he’s …” I searched for how to explain it in a way a six-year-old would understand. “He’s a criminal.” Those words felt wrong, so I amended them. “He was a criminal.”
“Why did he hurt you guys?” inquired Li’l D. Read more…
If we were having coffee today, I’d set my cup on the table and ask if you minded a brief rant.
Assuming you said you didn’t mind, I’d tell you about something that’s been scrabbling around the back of my mind for the last week.
Last weekend, my family and I went to a different farmers market than usual. Getting there took twice as long as getting to our usual market, following which we immediately discovered this one was bigger and more crowded by far. “I’m never coming here again!” I told my husband, Anthony, before we’d even reached the clean meat vendor that’s central to our weekly trips.
I laughed when we reached our destination. Vegans had set up shop directly across from our beloved ranchers. These vegans were trying to hand brochures to my young sons, which I wordlessly waved off with a polite, “No, thank you.”
At some point, though, I heard the words they were actually saying. I saw the signs they’d posted, and I bristled. The gist of the signs was: GO VEGAN OR DIE … of heart disease, of cancer, of stroke. Read more…
“Oh, shoot!” exclaimed my husband, Anthony, as he strapped our youngest son to his back on a recent shopping trip. “Did you bring Littler J’s allergy bag?”
“Dang it, no,” I replied. We’ve been careful to carry this bag with us everywhere since discovering Littler J’s egg allergy many months ago, but had forgotten it this particular morning.
I laughed at Anthony’s follow-up reply.
“Why are you laughing?” asked my six-year-old, Li’l D. Read more…
I am Deborah Bryan,
and no longer Deborah Bryan.
I am a mother,
(and a Sister),
(to a Black man,
father of a little boy whose love of John Henry
reminds me how serious is the need for representation in media),
and a would-be superhero. Read more…