Covid-19 · Fostering · Parenting


The nature of a blog is that I communicate in words. Words are a vehicle through which I convey thoughts, feelings and ideas that hope to provoke thought, inspire or inform.

Words aren’t the same for everyone. My head is full of them all the time. They are tools to express a rich thought life for me.

For others they are like butterflies… flitting elusively. Beautiful but hard to capture and direct. Some use them like a sports ball. They bat them back and forth in a quest for supremacy. For others they are razor blades that must be handled with great care or they will cut and wound.

I have taken for granted the privilege of language and all that it has been in my family. Our home has been rich in language from day one. Our kids grew up surrounded by books, and stories, ideas and learning. They learned to enjoy the world of words and what it opened up to them. Yet they each approach words differently as adults.

The children of the Other Mother approach words differently too.

She consumes books avidly and constantly asks for meaning and clarification. She is finding expression in words for the things she has wrestled with. They are giving her freedom. I am thankful to be a part of seeing that happen for her.

a story written by a 12 year old girl in foster care

He feels trapped by words. He constantly struggles to find the words for common things and is filled with dread at having to decipher meaning from a paragraph. For him words are a struggle … and he is paralyzed by the need to use them to interact with the world. He says he doesn’t think in words… but can’t find the words to explain the pictures he sees.


We use them to communicate with those we interact with. But do they hear what we want them to hear? Does my foster son hear love and concern when we help him with words… or does he hear condemnation? It is up to us to make sure that we use words in a way that bring life.

I have always loved the biblical image of living water. My desire is that my words would always bring refreshment and life even if those words are hard. I don’t ever want to suck the life out of someone like a mouth full of sand.

The current Covid-19 situation has been a blizzard of words. Words used to defend the severity and debunk it. Words used to defend the actions of government and accuse. So many people select the words that line up with what they want to believe and then throw those words out like they own them.

So many words.

And even the words that are used are understood differently by different people. You’d think that being able to put a word on something would make it clear and plain to all. It doesn’t!

We all read the words through our own filter that is built from our life experiences and belief system.

It’s messy.

Be kind.

Not everyone handles words the same as you do. Not everyone hears words the same as you do.

In the midst of the mess


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