Purgatory acknowledges basic goodness.

You aren’t going to hell.

But you’re not quite ready for heaven.

You’re good.

But not quite good enough.



So anyway and everything.

I played the violin from the age of 9 to 19.

My early years of purgatory.

Orchestra after orchestra. Recital upon recital.

I suffered. I was good. But never quite good enough.

My bow was up when it should have been down.

Violin purgatory.

Meant that I wasn’t good enough.

Not just my violin playing.

But me.

I thought I wasn’t worthy.

Because my bow was up when it should have been down.

And I’ve lived with that decade after decade.

My violin secure in its case/coffin?

And me in Purgatory.

Finally and now.

I understand.

The human imagination.

Can create heaven and hell.

Good and not good enough.


So if we can create purgatory from our imagination.

Can’t we create heaven?

Can’t we be good enough?

“Always try to be kinder than is necessary.”

Together we can change the world.


R.J. Palacio. You are my hero.

You’ve written a┬ánovel for children that celebrates kindness and compassion and courage and sweetness and love.

You’ve written a novel that celebrates what it means to be human.

You’ve captured our nature. The good, the bad, the ugly.

If enough people read Wonder the world will change.

This I believe.

Please believe with me.

“Shall we make a new rule of life…always to try to be a little kinder than is necessary.”

-Mr. Tushman quoting J.M. Barrie

Recognizing Angels

Looking out my window. Getting on toward sunset. A downy woodpecker, two mourning doves, a red breasted grosbeak. A gaggle of house sparrows.

Gathering at the feeders.

My angels.

I know really, and everything.

They are.

They bring me peace and happiness and love and joy.

To know that I can offer them a resting place. Some nourishment. The sanctuary to raise their young.


They offer me a knowing.

That there is goodness and beauty.

And that we all depend on one another.

Maybe I’m an angel to them.

I know they are to me.

Shout Out to Max

For keeping me real. And honest. And humble.


Most forgiving. Most compassionate.



He knows when his mom blogs

sometimes on people he knows too

and respects. And looks up to.

He understands what his mom is trying to do.

She’s trying to sort it all out.

(In a good way!)

When she thinks someone is “acting like a jerk”

it does not mean that they are a jerk.

He gets that.

And that’s really pretty cool.