Personal Reflections Feb 2013: waiting for WHAT’S NEXT {BRCA}

The snowglobe is back with a fury.
It’s truly gorgeous, yet today it’s moody
inside the globe due to cabin fever and
grief I feel for my mom who is sitting
with a port in her empty bosom at chemo.

They pump her full of medicine which will
for days keep her nauseous and feeling
as though she has been run over by a truck.
Tomorrow a painful shot will be injected
directly into her bones and wipe her out.

Normally, on a day like today
I would stuff myself with
delicious baked goods and maybe
fall to my knees in prayer.
Me and gluten are no
longer friends though.
So there’s that too.

pics of mom’s arizona house

Cancer can easily steal a daughter’s sense of humor,
and I friggin hate cancer for that…I can’t stand
the femininity it steals from my mother
and these tears it claims on my keyboard.

*pulls it together*


dolls of my childhood

(I particularly like the big girl panties to ‘dolls of my childhood’ segueway.)

I feel my creative-self at a crossroads
and know from the reading
I do in blogland that many
of you can relate.

Everyday this week my heart has asked:
It’s not worry. Not boredom.
Sort of a lesson in surrendering
I sense that I have to learn.
It’s an invitation to open up.

these are the sort of details my mom sees to before i visit!

I have written professionally
for magazines and web for 4 years,
and while publishing credits
are fulfilling (500+, mama!),
it does divert attention away from
creating art and working on a book.

Read about the BRCA journey of me and my sister

Is a book what’s next?
And why is what I have to say important
in light of everything else being said out there?

Both my mom and sister in Arizona are
carrying unspeakable burdens, and I
would like to be accessible to them.

Is simply being near the phone
and frequent traveling what’s next?
BTW, I am on facebook now to better
stay in touch, and hello lovely
wants to you like its page…I don’t exactly
understand why…but they do, so you should.

my new pink lenses

Pursuing a Ph.D. is on my list;
is campus life next?

my bedroom at mom’s

Our nest is nearly empty as our
youngest will head to college
in six months.

Is a new (and smaller!) home
construction project next?
Heavens-to-Patina-Farm, Brooke,
you are making it
awfully hard for me to stay put.

I am unsure.

So I am being still.
I am listening.
I am telling my heart
it’s okay we don’t know yet.
I am praying for discernment
and peace as I wait.

I am counting my blessings,
aware that the sheer existence
of so many options available
means I am beyond fortunate,
abundantly rich in resources and love.

Thank you for reading me,
for keeping my mom in your prayers,
and for making Hello Lovely such
a restful haven for me.

Peace to you right where you are.




  1. February 7, 2013 / 10:30 pm

    Dear Michele, I follow your blog and love your beautiful posts. Today's post hit me like a ton of bricks. My beloved Mom had breast cancer. I hate cancer. Hate is not even a strong enough word. I feel your pain, your anger, your sadness, your helplessness. I wish I had the perfect words to send all of it out into the stratosphere, but I don't. Just know you, your family and most importantly your precious Mom are covered in prayers. Peace to you.

  2. February 7, 2013 / 10:34 pm

    Thank you for sharing your family with all of us – you bless us all by letting us see the bond between you, your sisters, and your mother! Prayers for your mother, and for you as you try to discern our direction. As someone who is also trying to discern future direction, I know the feeling of waiting for an answer yet knowing the wait will be worth it. Thank you for opening your heart to us!

  3. February 7, 2013 / 10:39 pm

    Oh My sweet lovely Michele how I love you and your words. You always touch my heart in so many ways. About what you say being different than any other, it might not be, but I can guarantee it would never be said with such heart and feelings as you say it. Life is a journey for sure, sometimes wonderful and sometimes quite sad as is the case with your Mom. I am sure all those that are standing by watching your family are marveling at your closeness to eachother and to God. You show so much love both for your family and for God. I would say you are doing just the right thing at the right time. I will be here to follow along the next step in your journey, anxiously awaiting more of your beautiful words,
    xo Kathysue

  4. February 7, 2013 / 11:43 pm

    This was possibly my most favorite post of yours yet Michele! It brought tears to my eyes on several parts yet made me laugh too. I see you have been incredibly blessed to have a wonderful and beautiful family. To have the freedom to express yourself and to live a good life. I love how you express yourself and one thing is to be sure, we never really know whats next, even with all the planning we want and try to do….even with all that, God sometimes has other plans.

    I think we all have days of uncertainty, doubt,etc..then wake up the next morning feeling ready to conquer the world, such is life. Hope your mom is soon on the mend, may she continue to be blessed by the love you and your sisters bestow on her, and may you find the answers to your questions…….and your journey in life reap you much personal happiness and fulfillment, Michele. In my eyes, there is NOTHING you cannot do!

  5. February 7, 2013 / 11:46 pm

    Michele, I can understand your deeper, pensive mood today. Not everyday is a day where humor flows naturally, especially when one's mother is being prepared for a painful shot. I completely understand. It does seem like those moments can cause us to ponder our own path…as you seem to be doing. On days like these, I think simply being ok with 'not knowing' is work enough. No answers, just being in the moment. Like my old mentor used to say, "can you simply be curious?" In the meantime, I'll be sending my positive energy and prayerful thoughts to your Mom.
    Leslie (Gwen Moss)

  6. February 8, 2013 / 12:00 am

    Remember to just keep moving forward! Take it one day at a time–things wil look brighter tomorrow! Your son is gorgeous–my eldest daughter will be going to college next year too–they would look so cute together (If my daughter ever knew I said that!!)

  7. February 8, 2013 / 12:00 am

    Remember to just keep moving forward! Take it one day at a time–things wil look brighter tomorrow! Your son is gorgeous–my eldest daughter will be going to college next year too–they would look so cute together (If my daughter ever knew I said that!!)

  8. February 8, 2013 / 12:47 am

    So sorry that your mom is going thru this – I can empathize with you since my dad is going thru the same thing.

    Keep strong (and away from the pastries)!

  9. February 8, 2013 / 1:33 am

    Michele~you had me at Madame Alexander dolls in this post…I recognize some of the same 'gals' from my childhood collection ;).
    You also had me, on a much deeper level, at "I friggin hate cancer". You and your family are in my prayers for peace and strength~I know it's a journey, and at times,it feels like a battle for each of you. For myself, and I'm sure for you and your family, prayer helps with the constant anxiety. So did turning up the music really loud sometimes or crying my eyes out over a glass of wine, whatever works for you is what you need to do. Both of my parents were touched by cancer, at different times, so I've seen both sides of this friggin horrid disease. My mom, following breast cancer and treatment is back to her energetic self and doing really great, despite some scary times. Sadly, we lost my beloved dad, just 4 years ago, after a sudden but devastating cancer diagnosis…tears as I write this….I HATE cancer!!! Despite that it has taught me, more than anything in life, to live every moment and enjoy time with those we love. Live life!! You are sweet and loving daughter and I know that having your love and support means the world to your parents.
    As for blogging and writing and crossroads….write the book~I'd love to buy it!
    xx, Heather

  10. February 8, 2013 / 1:51 am

    This is such an honest post Michele and like everyone else here.. brought tears to my eyes. The older I get the more I realize how fortunate we are to just BE {here}.. in whatever state. Being still and thinking about the next step is perfect Michele. Everything will come together for you personally and your amazing Mom will do what she needs to do. It is so painful to go through this.. there are so many feelings and all the childhood memories. I couldn't agree with Heather more.. do what you need to do. You can vent to us ANY time.

    Look at that handsome boy you've raised:) He's got lots ahead and so do you! You get to be part of the next part of HIS life which may include lots of new beginnings for you.

    (the granola looks so good!;)


  11. February 8, 2013 / 2:25 am

    I loved this post Michele, although it leaves me kinda speechless. I don't blame you for being pissed off at the stupid effing bitch ass cancer… it all sounds awful and maddening. It's good listening to you process parts of it, your mom, your past, your future… what's next… watching you wrestling with letting go a little bit and opening to let your heart and spirit guide you through the next thing. You are so in the midst of a shift, which is clearly unsettling and at the same time very powerful.
    I love the way your mom makes things so special, and your pretty bedroom at her house. Your son is freakin beautiful… oh my gosh, and holy moly, another huge change, him going off to college! I'm very curious how you're doing off the gluten too…
    Anyway, here with you… thanks for being so freakin real, it's awesome


  12. February 8, 2013 / 2:59 am

    you are in my thoughts, i am with you, hoping for you and anticipating a future of good things.

  13. February 8, 2013 / 3:16 am

    Oh, I just ached along
    with you through every
    word. I know what it is
    like to journey with loved
    ones through cancer. It
    certainly brings home the
    point that we shouldn't
    wait to pursue what our
    hearts call us to do. I know
    that you will listen to that
    small, still voice and it will
    lead you in the right direction.

    Your son is so handsome.
    My daughter is a senior, too,
    but she is my eldest. I know
    when her little bro graduates,
    I will also be at a crossroads.

    It's the natural way of things.

    I love your room at your mom's
    house, as well as the picture of
    your folks, together. It's easy
    to see where the YOU in you has
    come from. So much love.

    Praying for healing for your mom
    and clarity for you, my lovely, lovely

    xo Suzanne

  14. February 8, 2013 / 5:24 am

    It was a very moving post to read. I'll you and your mom in my thoughts and I can oly hope that the violent medicine will be efficient.
    Being at a crossroad in life can be very uncomfortable, but it's better than feeling stuck.
    Wising you some peace of mind,

  15. February 8, 2013 / 11:42 am

    I know exactly what you're going through Michele and I feel for you and your family. The most you can do is keep the faith and be there for your Mom. Life works in mysterious ways and the best we can do is try to see the brighter side. Sending you big hugs across the miles my friend.


  16. February 8, 2013 / 12:19 pm

    I know what you are going through, I have tone throug the same… My prayers goes out to you.
    If you are worried And you cant sleep, just count your blessings insted of sheeps….
    Hugs Elisabeth 😉

  17. February 8, 2013 / 1:20 pm

    Oh Michele, your honesty & vulnerability are touching – I know the brutality of cancer from my own Mom's treatment & how the treatment just takes its toll. But your Mom needs you to be positive & strong so look after yourself & just keep praying for her recovery.

    Dee at the Carlton

  18. February 8, 2013 / 3:57 pm

    Hi, Michele – Beautifully said….I admire your honesty. You have such a gift with words (and art, photography, etc). Go for that book!! I'm so sorry for your mom's pain. Sending you all my very best – Take care, Loi

  19. February 8, 2013 / 9:39 pm

    As promised, I've stopped over to hang out here for a little bit. I wanted to thank you again for taking the time out of your day to comment on my little insignificant blog. Now that I'm here, I see that in doing so, you took precious time away from your own prayers for your dear mother. Your words are beautifully written and your photos show the extent of the love and life of the people who surround you. I wish you and yours much health, healing, and happiness.

  20. February 8, 2013 / 9:47 pm

    Hi Michele,
    You were just over at my blog and suggested I hop on over. I have been here many times before and adore your space. The pointe shoes suck me in every time!
    Your current post made me really hurt. I hurt for you, your mom, and anyone dealing with cancer. I've been there too and it is a long, heartbreaking road. Try to find joy in the grim experience. The blog, Lil Blue Boo wrote a series called Cancer Chronicles as she went through treatment as a young mom. Maybe you should check it out. She did such an amazing job of choosing joy. Today I dedicate my joy to your beautiful mom.
    avoir foi en la grâce de Dieu

  21. February 8, 2013 / 9:57 pm

    Hi Michele,
    thank you for stopping by my lil corner of the world and living a sweet comment. so glad you did as i could then find you. you have such a lovely place here.
    I'm so terribly sorry to hear about your mother fighting cancer. i know how hard it is as i was there with my own mother and sister.
    sending blessings your way

  22. February 8, 2013 / 11:16 pm

    i am sweetly overwhelmed by your kindness, candor, and nurturing words for me and mom. i am as vulnerable as ever yet feel supported. thank you for this.

  23. February 9, 2013 / 12:00 am

    There's so much loveliness…I don't know where to start… give out such a "feel good" place to visit, thank you….Pamie G. Texas Hill Country

  24. February 9, 2013 / 1:42 am

    Oh so sorry you have to go through this pain..I hate cancer. Just said a little prayer for you and your family.

  25. February 9, 2013 / 9:33 pm

    You know…..
    you are in my prayers already, friend.

    Keep the faith.
    Stay strong.
    She needs you to now.

    Beautiful family… so precious.
    Hugs them lots. Celebrate and
    count blessings. Easy to say, I know.

    Hang in there, sweetie.
    HE loves you and won't leave you now.


  26. February 9, 2013 / 11:43 pm

    Hello Michele,

    I have been away this past week as I lost a very special Aunt to depression. I am so very sorry to hear about your mom, my thoughts are with you and your mom. IT is so terribly hard to be away from our loved ones when they are hurting or in pain. I will keep you and your family in my prayer chain.

    I did not know you were near Chicago! I am visiting Milwaukee where my family lives and thankfully I was here, I lost my Aunt last week and last night another Aunt.

    Will you be going to the Blogher conference in Chicago in July?

    I think you are correct to sit and wait, God will tell you what way to move, all of your thoughts have merit.

    Take care, Elizabeth

  27. February 10, 2013 / 4:12 pm

    Such a beautiful post. Beautiful verses Michele- changing emotions recollected in tranquility and carefully captured through words- a thing that only you can do. Much as I love you, I love the writer in you. No one can put so much feelings in so little words. You are one talented blogger.
    Love your pink glasses
    Love to your mom.
    Always wear those big girl pants and little girl smile.

  28. February 11, 2013 / 2:00 am

    smooches to you, roy. that just made my day and will keep me going for some time. spoiled am i!


  29. February 16, 2013 / 12:53 pm

    I couldn't imagine how hard this time must be for you and nothing I write seems like the 'right thing' to say (because there aren't any words to take away your hurt) but do know you are in my thoughts dear sweet one. xxx

  30. February 16, 2013 / 2:47 pm

    Michele, I am so very sorry to hear about your mom. Sending love and good wishes your way.

  31. February 24, 2013 / 10:46 pm

    How horrible do I feel that I missed this post….you sweet girl….I know how you are feeling. I lost my Mom to cancer [lung] and not a day goes by that I don't want to pick up the phone and call her. Wish I lived in Chi town so we could have a glass of wine and tell stories… are the best and I am praying for your family.

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