Emotional Baggage? Sorry, Suitcases Full!

Everybody has emotional baggage. However, Mary had suitcases full: A rather far from normal upbringing of her own The death of her mother at a very young age Impaired memories and perceptions Drowning her sorrows in chemical substances, food or highs from emotionally abusing those around her She was truly a case study for medical […]

Drama Llamas

Ever heard of a Drama Llama? It’s someone who spits out all of their drama at you, just like the llama spits at people. Our family actually was blessed or cursed with an entire herd of them. Either Mother was off on one of her tirades (often alcohol induced) or our stepmother Beatrice was slamming […]

Normal Step-family

Once Dad married our stepmother Beatrice, my sister Lindy and I thought we would have a normal step-family. We didn’t actually know what exactly that would entail, but we had some ideas. In our “Normal Step-family” we assumed that we could have Coca-Cola whenever we wanted. That part turned out be true. In our “Normal […]

Sink or Swim

Friday nights routinely found us participating in the family swim at the local YMCA. This tradition started before our parents divorced, and it continued with our new stepbrother and stepsister. The four of us would be splashing around with great delight. I’m still not sure where our stepmother Beatrice was on these family nights. After […]

Pancake Palooza

As mentioned earlier, after Dad’s divorce from Mother and his new marriage to our stepmother Beatrice, my sister and I became part of a blended family with double the number of kids. Once my sister and I were part of that new household, our dad started a new tradition of fixing breakfast every Sunday morning. […]


After returning back home “unexpectedly” from Des Moines (but still Far from Normal), my sister and I were in a state of shock. Attempting to assimilate the events that had transpired – and how they would have played out under other circumstances – was mind-boggling. We slept fitfully and upon awakening began to put the […]