Love and Strength | What My Mom Taught Me | Kyla Thompson

Originally submitted as an English essay on October 18, 2018. Kyla is a student at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School. My mom. My mom is richly deserving of so many more years on this planet; teaching my siblings and I valuable lessons; being a compassionate and caring friend; being a wife, and truly just being herself. She was taken from us way too early. But with the time she had on this Earth, she put her whole heart and full self into everything she accomplished. She was strong. If I could only describe her in one word, that is is the word. Strong. After her recurrence of breast cancer in late 2008, she woke up every morning knowing the day was going to be hard, but not letting the negative effects of cancer ruin the day she was going to have. None of us know how much time we have on this earth, so we must use the time we each have to the fullest. That is what my mom did. My mom woke us up, drove us to school, worked from 9 to 5, drove us home, made dinner, and put us to bed. To sleep. All of this while there were cancer cells inside her body, mutating, eventually metastasizing in early 2014 and overwhelming her good cells on the morning of October 21, 2014. If that isn’t strong, I don’t know what is. She was as strong as the scent of her perfume. She put her family before anything. She put her family before her cancer. She realized that yes cancer can kill physically, but it can’t kill...

The Powdered Donut Manifesto | You Must Release to Receive

We have never started the drive on a Friday, but we’ve done the drive so many times. We’ve done the drive in Honda Pilots. Honda Odysseys. And a few other cars along the way. With car seats in the back and luggage racks on top. And, now, those that used to be in the car seats sit up front. In the driver’s seat. Sharing the miles. For 15 of our 16 years, we’ve come here for a week. The third week of July. From Sunday to Sunday. Sharing laughter. Sharing joy. Sharing meals. Sharing sand. Sharing ice cream and mini-golf. Sharing… well, life. And love. As a family. This year our house rental shifted from Saturday to Saturday. And, this morning, on my mat at Glow Yoga, something else shifted. More on that in a moment. For now, a little more about the beach. These journeys to the beach started back in the summer of 2003. Heading east from Austin. Along Route 10. Through East Texas. Louisiana. Mississippi. Over the Atchafalaya bridge before Baton Rouge. To connect with Maureen’s family. To go to the beach. In Ft. Morgan. Ft. Morgan is just west of Gulf Shores, Alabama, and our beach house is just 4 miles from the end of what is the Florida panhandle. Where the sand runs out from what starts all the way down near Key West. It is called by some the “red-neck Riviera.” It is full of white sands and blue waters and depending on the weather in the Gulf of Mexico, there are waves. Sometimes really good ones. And for a couple of years,...