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"Your life is not a problem to be solved but a gift to be opened." ~ Wayne Muller

When Words are Like Clanging Cymbals

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“Living has yet to be generally recognized as one of the arts.” ~Karl De Schweinitz

I don’t think I’m a writer any more.

When I feel sad or ponderous or have that one moment of ridiculous clarity, I don’t scamper helter-skelter for the computer like I once did. I don’t leave dinner to burn on the stove or fly from the folding. The sudden impulsiveness that used to propel me toward the making of beautiful things has left me as impulsively as it came.

Sunsets still charm my socks off. And I still spend a good portion of my day in quiet contemplation. The taste of life still whets my appetite and lingers on my lips and always leaves me hungry for more. Wonder is still as likely a companion as sorrow. And I still love to dangle my toes in the mysteries of existence. Of sun and rain taking turn on center stage. Of joy and pain doing the same. How one is without glory except for the other.

What I’m saying, I guess, is that there is peace around and peace above and peace within. I’m not angry or bitter at the craft in any way. But it has lost something for me. I can’t seem to make my heart beat faster at the idea of turning a phrase like nobody’s business or at the attempt to wax poetic and profound.« Continue »

In the Time We Have Left

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August 2003, my dad’s Parkinson’s disease was discovered.

It’s been eleven years since the diagnosis, and time has both stretched out like a hot summer day and sped up like a ball down a hill, collecting speed as it charges onward.

When it all first came about, I wrote pages and pages in neon-colored little notebooks–this was back in the myspace/livejournal era, the dark ages really. Those were the days my family didn’t publicly talk about the disease, and my notebooks kept me sane. As I began to process my dad’s diagnosis, the things I said to myself on those pages were beyond odd. “At least it’s not cancer!,” chirpily. Comfortingly. Now I think to myself, what does that even mean?

Here’s the thing about Parkinson’s: it’s very difficult to understand from the outside looking in. For those first six years, maybe seven, the changes in my dad were subtle. Having watched my dad be an exercise fanatic all throughout my growing up years, I saw him slowly lose the ability to run the way he used to.« Continue »

Discover the Healing Power of Writing Your Story

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For a long time I didn’t feel good about my story. My past followed me around like a pesky shadow I wanted to stomp away. An empty past with titles such as depressed and useless hanging over it. And even though I thought I had my past tightly locked away in the dusty closet of [...]

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Why I Chose to Rise and Forgive

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The year I turned seven, my father, a government employee, was relocated to another town. Myself, my mother and my siblings stayed back home. I never really knew why, but I assumed it was because we were already settled into our home and the local schools. As kids, we weren’t prepared for this major upheaval in our [...]

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Paper Can Handle the Truth

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I must have written I’m afraid thirty times in a row. The ink giving way to emotion, letters becoming large and lose, traveling down the page. With each phrase scrawled in my journal, I felt a little bit of relief. It wasn’t that there was no one in my life I could confide in—quite the [...]

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Visiting the Girl I Used to Be

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This post is part of the Atlas Girl Blog Tour which I am delighted to be a part of along with hundreds of inspiring bloggers. To learn more and to join us, CLICK HERE!  This summer I’ll be locking up house and heading back to my homeland for a visit. We’ll spend 11 days in England, 7 [...]

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