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This is the place I often come to be with you. It’s funny how you are always here before I put my fingers to the keys. It seems I carry you around with me. We’ve grown close without trying. Because we aren’t afraid to share things here, things we carry in our hearts.

See, there was a time I believed it was all about me. But you showed me differently. You started bringing some people along with you to sit at the hearth with us. You knew better than I who would enjoy being with us, so I learned to just wait and see who would show up. What unexpected joy. 

This morning, I’ve cut the pumpkin bread while the fresh ground coffee drips into our cups.

With our mugs and comfy chairs, we’re ready. You have never seemed to mind that my fingers are busy on the keyboard as we sit here together. And it was you who helped me realize the importance of listening before typing. Even back in my theatre days, I was not a good listener. Maybe that’s why acting didn’t become a passion. 

I was always worried about what to say next. It was a rare occasion that I trusted the Spirit, who’s always available to guide us, so we can take our time, reacting, responding, and revealing the tender places. But when I did? It was marvelous. You have helped me so much with that. Because I trust you. Trust is so important. 

Trust with what? 

Trust with myself for one, and believing my thoughts are valid, that my life is valid, that I have something of value to share. I needed you to recognize that. So many times I felt I couldn’t be truthful. Who wants to share the real truth? Right? You showed me truth is the only thing worth sharing. I learned that from you.

Here, have some pumpkin bread. It’s from Breadsmith. Don’t you just love Breadsmith? To me the bread is the taste of fall. You know, pumpkins and all…

I saw someone decorating their yard on my way home from church on Sunday. Their lawn was wall to wall blow-up pumpkins, skeletons, witches on broomsticks and all sorts of things. It looked like our attic or my head on a bad day. It’s fun for some I s’pose, but I crave open spaces. I don’t need any more clutter in my life. But that’s me.

You may have noticed it’s been awhile since I’ve joined you here. Todd and I were talking, and he said he didn’t think blogging was doing me any good. He suggested working more on my manuscripts and getting some things submitted for publication might be a better use of my time. That was three weeks ago, almost to the day. How’s that going, you ask?

Well, for one, I’ve realized how terribly I miss you. And I haven’t submitted anything, but I have worked on the manuscripts, I enrolled in a writer’s retreat and signed up for the Wisconsin Writer’s Association Conference . I can thank Todd for that, for getting me out of my head and back out there a bit more. I’ve met some new writers already and have learned some great things about letting go of the inner critic (ugh) and it’s all very exciting. Secondly, I’ve realized how much we need each other. Maybe soon we’ll be inviting others in to join us here at the hearth. I hope so.

There are so many things I want to share with you since the last time we were together. (Like rediscovering the Lakefront over Labor Day!) 

But for today, this is what’s important for me to say: You, my friend, have shown me that it’s not about me. It’s about you! 

You, who are in my heart, words connect us, but also the silences, and most importantly, the listening. You taught me this and it has made all the difference. I just wanted to tell you that today. So here’s to you—your words, your silences, and to listening. Like I said, you’ve changed my life—thank you. 


With Love 

Photos except for Fannie, Unsplash

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