Between a rock and a hard place
To every heart stuck in a tough spot - This will not last forever and you are not alone. When[...]
Standing watch
Tough week around here and I’m having to echo my own words back to myself. If you don’t know what[...]
Discomfort and pancakes
I have about six writing pieces in progress right now and opened my computer this morning to polish and finish[...]
Dealing with the Un-Ideal
A silly story, and a heavier thought. We’re a music family so we’re thick in the two weeks of December[...]
This is why I work hard on my brain and heart every day - to make sure that this is[...]
Grief is sucky (and sneaky)
I donated all our Christmas ornaments last year, with intent to shop after-Christmas sales for new decor. It will not[...]
Whether you’re bursting with grateful praise, or finding it hard to even feel thankful for the breath in your lungs,[...]
Heaven and earth
Sometimes the veil between heaven and earth feels paper thin. It’s been a beautiful day to remember our firstborn, making[...]
Thanks, Timehop
Well, Timehop, thanks. Sincerely and also with a glare. These 17 days of our son’s beautiful life feel like a[...]
I was livid at God for cheating me – for taking my baby, for wrecking my body, for smashing my[...]
Emotional management
Pro tip, weird hack, whatever you want to call it… this emotional management strategy works. Real talk on feelings (like[...]
Showing up
I’m up… again. Maybe I’m up *still?*. It’s been a week and the days just kind of blur together. This[...]
Birthdays in heaven
He’s 13 today. The boy who made me a mom. And he’s not here to celebrate. Most of the time[...]
When you’re at the end of yourself
Sometimes there is nothing left to do but cry... and pray... and believe... that if we are still breathing, God[...]
Heroes and Villains
Truths I Don’t Like #748: I am the villain in someone else’s story. Probably lots of someones, actually. A lifetime[...]
While I didn’t get the pleasure of intentionally smashing this bowl to smithereens (an unfortunate dish-unloading incident), seeing and hearing[...]
Going forward
Well, we made it.  Made it through October, I mean.  I know the month's not officially over yet, but we[...]
Suffering and gratitude
I think most of us engage in a daily tug-of-war between suffering and gratitude.  If someone had told me to[...]
Christmas presence: Stocking Stuffers 1-7
I have a present for you!  Well, presents, plural.  PRESENCE, actually. 31 little gifts of presence for the Advent season.[...]
October: Pregnancy Loss Month (and why I wish Halloween would disappear)
Today’s my little guy’s birthday. He’s got the fall sniffles, so he’s extra snuggly. Which is a special treat, since[...]
On Grief: loose ends and closing chapters
It takes time to tie the loose ends of grief. I am no stranger to this fact but I don't[...]
Everything happens for a reason
If I had a nickel for every time someone told me (or I told someone) everything happens for a reason…[...]
Mother Warrior – a Mothers Day battle cry
Mothers Day is messy for me, a different kind of wonderful-hard-precious-messy every year. We've all got issues and I know[...]
Prayer: when the answer is no
Today I was supposed to be sharing a message with a community group for the National Day of Prayer. I[...]
To dust we shall return
I am no stranger to ashes. I whisper a love song to the ashes of the bone of my bone[...]
Book launch, grief work, and thank you
It’s been five days since the book launch and I think I have some organized words now. Or at least[...]
Surviving the holidays when you’re barely surviving
Surviving the holidays seems impossible when your life is falling apart.  (Spoiler alert: you can do it.  Keep reading and[...]
Things Change
My original working title for the book was Blue October until someone told me I have been living under a[...]
Not okay (and that’s okay)
This is a big week in our house.  Marriage stuff (ouchy stuff) and the anniversary of LJ’s death are JUST[...]
Happy 10th birthday, LJ
I’ve been walking around all day with a lump in my throat that’ll undoubtedly burst at the first “how are[...]
What grief looks like 10 years later
I ran across one of the most accurate graphics this week that I've ever seen.  This is exactly true for[...]
Lost and Found: a turn of the grief wheel
I don’t panic much anymore – life experience has taught me that it’s not much use.  But I panicked this[...]
From grief to peace: why Good Friday brings hope for every grieving heart
Holy week is my favorite week of the year.  I've spent nearly a lifetime in ministry and service of some[...]
Don’t let the fear of failure hold you back
How's this for a little pep talk for your morning?! Yep, we're gonna talk about it - fear. Specifically our[...]
Grace beyond measure
This post originally appeared as "Nine Years of Grace" on Heartfully Present in January 2019. I promised I would be[...]
Dealing with pain and growing through it
The truth about dealing with pain is that, despite our best efforts to hide it, we are all doing it.[...]
When Mothers Day is Hard
For every woman who swallows the lump in her throat on Mothers Day and for every daughter missing her mom,[...]
He is Not Here
It was the crisp cool morning of a South Texas November. Quiet, slow footsteps collected on the cobblestone path as[...]
How Experience Changes Us For Good
If you met your 10-years-ago self on the street, would you recognize her? If I ran into 10-years-ago me, I[...]
How to (Actually) Support Someone in Grief
When a friend or loved one is in the throws of grief, we feel helpless. This is normal. We're compelled[...]
Breaking Plates
Jessica's note: Breaking Plates was written in 2017 as a part of grief healing, prior to launching Heartfully Present. I[...]

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