death

Breaking the Ice with Words and Grief

Dear Sebastian, Forgive me. I know you need some attention. You’ve been persistently reminding me for more than a year, but somehow I haven’t managed to sit down and contemplate you properly. Last summer, your days were rushed into the beginning of Family Camp. I thought of you all the time, but couldn’t grieve or cry thoroughly. In response, I’ve […]

Rest in peace, Robin.

What a shock, to learn that you’re gone from us. We are sad about it – devastated, bereft – all over the planet. We have not yet had time to process how much the world is depleted by your absence; we only know that when we found out, we could hardly believe it. Our jaws dropped. Our hearts hurt. The […]

How Fine the Line

We had awful, awful news at our school last week. A five-year-old girl died after returning home from school one afternoon. One of our own kindergarten students. It’s like a punch in the gut, a slap in the face that makes you see stars, and makes the colours all weirdly bright. Suddenly danger is brilliantly visible in every cranny of […]

Ladders from Dark Places

This past Thursday, October 10th, was World Mental Health Day. Please, let’s talk. Mental health, or lack thereof, is a subject very close to my heart. Several people who share my blood have struggled with depression and similar mental illnesses. So has my husband. In fact, my Hubbibi was suffering from depression when we first got together. It had dogged […]

Are police officers supposed to be scary?

If you’re Ontarian, or even Canadian, you’ve probably heard about Sammy Yatim, the 18-year-old who was shot dead by police a couple weeks ago on an empty Toronto streetcar. You’ve probably heard that he was armed with a knife, that he was acting threatening, and that he was shot at nine times. (Eight of the shots are said to have […]

A Review of All Things Misérables

So I finally got to see the new Les Mis movie in mid-February, when it had been in theatres for a month and a half. This is rather a travesty. I’m a musical geek. I could sing you most of the soundtracks for about a dozen different musicals.* I was also a French major; I studied much French lit, loved […]

For my sparkly grandmother

I have a necklace my maternal grandmother bequeathed to me. She bought it in Greece, on a long-ago voyage. Whenever I wear it, I get compliments on it. I say, “It used to be my grandmother’s,” and people are taken aback, because it’s so funky and contemporary-looking. I’ve always simply said, “She’s a really stylish lady.” About eight years ago, […]

Who would you have been when the Titanic sank?

Last night at about 2:30 a.m., the wreck of the Titanic turned 100 years old. There were four of us talking about it in our kitchen yesterday evening, and again this morning – about how there were boats travelling to that very spot in the Atlantic Ocean, to commemorate the centennial… and about what an overwhelming story it is, no […]

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