Recognizing our pain is the beginning of healing our connection

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Photo by Pam Sharpe on Unsplash

Imagine this scenario. Mom and her adult daughter are talking on the phone. Mom is trying to tell a story about a recent event. Daughter has missed some of the details — either she was distracted or Mom is not explaining it very well. She stops Mom and says “Wait. What are we talking about?”

Mom circles back and tries to explain again. Adult daughter is not satisfied. She still cannot follow what Mom is trying to tell her. She gets frustrated and her frustration builds to exasperation and anger. She unloads on Mom. …

Home resides within. Tap into it to create the sense of peace you need.

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Photo by Amy Humphries on Unsplash

Home. Because of the pandemic we have all been spending more time there than we normally do. Being in my home almost an entire year with very few times of venturing beyond my little plot of land has sent me on a path of self-discovery. I have been thinking a lot about what home means to me. I have been thinking about what makes a house a home.

I am remembering homes from my past, and sorting out why home has always been so important to me. Home, for me, is so ingrained in my imagination that it has become a strand of my DNA. Home has been the organizing principle of my life. All roads lead back to home. I find that the word HOME shows up on all my vision boards. …

Curating memories and making peace with the past

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Photo by sarandy westfall on Unsplash

I opened a box yesterday that was filled with little scraps of paper, notes to self, pages torn from magazines, quotes I love, photographs, and various other bits of detritus from a lifetime of trying to make sense of the world. That is when it occurred to me that I am at the stage of my life that I have become a curator of my experiences.

I can now see everything with the eyes of someone who has survived it all. I can look at the ugly parts, the painful parts, the messy parts and see the beauty in all of it. …

We cannot escape the fact that we all depend on one another

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Photo by Elias Morr on Unsplash

There is a lot of information on the internet and in books about how to become self-sufficient. I have to admit I have always been drawn to the idea. Growing our own food and preserving it for later has an appeal to me that I attribute to my grandmother. She always had a big garden and canned and froze the bounty so that we had homegrown food to eat all winter.

Another early influence on my desire for self-sufficiency was the magazine ‘Mother Earth News.’ It always had articles about how to make your homestead self-sufficient, how to become food independent, energy independent, etc. When my children were young we bought 30 acres and started a big garden almost before the furniture was moved in. We were going to live off the land. …

Slowing down and paying attention brings richness to life, lowers stress and creates great memories

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Photo courtesy of the author — Beth Bruno ©2020

Whether it’s a feeling of joy or a piece of pecan pie — when you savor something, you enjoy it to the fullest.


When was the last time you slowed down to savor something? Maybe it was a piece of chocolate that melted on your tongue setting off pleasure sensors in your brain. The word savor elicits thoughts of enjoyment, even ecstasy, that makes your eyes close and your mouth say “Mmmm.”

We often see the word ‘savor’ applied to food and eating, but many of life’s experiences lend themselves to being savored. Walking outside on a bright fall day, finding a $20 bill in a coat pocket, the light streaming across the room and lighting up your loved one’s face. These and hundreds of other moments daily present themselves to us to be savored, but we often rush right past them. …

Getting back to basics is a good start

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Photo by Andriyko Podilnyk on Unsplash

We are living in an anxious time. We find ourselves in territory that we have no map for. We were unprepared to be thrust into the midst of a pandemic. Each of us is finding our way the best we can, but there are times when some of us become overwhelmed and despondent. Anxiety levels are going up and we need to find ways to find some stability, some ground under our feet.

Honoring our feelings is the first step. Feeling anxious when the world is in chaos is pretty normal and we should not try to just push those feelings away. Acknowledging our despair with a hand to our heart and some soothing words is a great first step to settling our nerves and beginning to find ground. …

As I approach 60, I am ready to rest in my own ‘enoughness’

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Photo by Michal Ico on Unsplash

As I was scrolling through Facebook the other day my eyes landed on an advertisement for a course that promised to teach me how to find inner peace. Facebook has me pegged. Inner peace is something I have been looking for my whole life. The elusive nature of this blissful state keeps me searching, hungering, and working toward that golden pinnacle. “When I find the key, I will be ok,” I think. Then I will be enough.

My finger hovers over the ‘order now’ button for the course. I am tempted. Maybe this will be the one. Maybe I will finally find inner peace. …

We can’t judge them all from our own experience

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Photo by Wladislaw Peljuchno on Unsplash

Every one of us who is estranged from a parent or a child has a story. Our stories may share some common themes, but they are all different in some way because every family is different.

My daughter walked out of my life nearly 10 years ago. Our relationship had been difficult but I chalked that up to typical teen-aged daughter stuff. Then her father and I divorced and things got harder. I was working to make things better, so I was not ready for what happened next. She ghosted me. Cut me off. She blocked me from her phone. She unfriended me on Facebook. She refused to answer my e-mails. …

A Poem of praise for autumn

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Photo by Beth Bruno

is the queen of months
arriving for her coronation dressed in
scarlet and gold, holding in her hand
a scepter of light,
her firmament the blue of royalty.

She spreads her skirts
and her generosity spills around her feet,
filling larders, and holes in trees.
A feast as a hedge
against the meanness of winter.

The day-god is bright and warm,
glinting off her crown of golden leaves,
enticing her creatures to bask — the wren
on the deck rail, wings fully open to catch
the last of the warmth before winter’s chill.

The full hunter’s moon shines down on the hunter,
his large eyes seeing,
his wings soundlessly beating
as he swoops down for the little
furred creature in the leaves.
His soft hoots celebrate success. …

My friend’s mother died. I didn’t know because I unfollowed her.

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Photo by Long Truong on Unsplash

I got a text from a friend this morning. She said she misses me. She is sorry that politics have gotten in the way of so many friendships. She said she had lost several friends because of it. Then she told me her mother died and she thought I would have reached out. She assumed the reason I didn’t was because we don’t agree on politics. This is partially true, but it broke my heart, because I didn’t know her mother had died.

I worked with this friend for several years. We had so much in common. We had a real connection, and could talk about anything. Except politics. And that was ok. While we were seeing each other every day, we could sidestep that topic by mutual agreement. Our friendship was too valuable to let our political differences get in the way. …


Beth Bruno

Human learning to be human. Writing in hopes of getting there. You can follow me at

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