A Personal Note

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I wanted the joy and connection of publication to last longer than the period of time the issue was up. And I was so glad — and lucky — to join a team that held those same ideas and has worked so hard to bring them into reality. It has been an absolute joy to share this space with you all: to learn what informs your work, to get to know the people behind names on a screen, and in so many cases, to follow your writing careers from literary journals to books.

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And to experience it in person, to see you in action at our AWP readings, to come together as a group and to hear your words — those moments were nothing short of powerful, and I am truly grateful to have been in those rooms. The Lip Service blog and our author spotlights will continue, though. Archive About Submit. She said that you fell into the river.

Developing Your Personal Note Taking Style

I think part of what she believed was true. You were so young—only thirty-four—and you were trapped inside a body that had turned against you. I know Mum visited you after you went to live in that place, but I never got to come. I wish I had. Perhaps if you saw that I could handle your shadow side, you might have been able to hold on a bit longer. I just wish I could have told you that I still loved you, that I always had and always would.

Now I know. You were broken. Just like me. I know there were days when you were my dad and other days when you became that scary monster lashing out, raging inside and out, lost, alone.

On A Personal Note - Meaning?

The look in your eyes stayed with me for years, and I wondered if the look in mine pushed you over the edge. I live with dark despair too. I have seen how it takes over. And knowing that aching loneliness, knowing the ways it haunts, I wish I could go back and hold your hand. I wish I could fight it with you, wish I could smile at you one last time. Just one.


Maybe that would have given you the strength to hold on a little longer. When I was fifteen, a woman in our church was talking to my best friend about the place where you died. She smelled of mothballs and Youth Dew. In my adult years I willed myself to visit that river.

Shadows and silence had nearly killed me. I had to go. I wanted to understand. Some days I feel as if I live on the edge of a razor and could fall off at any moment.

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I wish you could have done this too. I know you understand that. I want to show others how to find strength in the middle of the mess. I think knowing how to do that is a gift, a beautiful miracle straight from God.

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We need a place to show up in our brokenness and still be loved, a safe place where we can come as we are. I used to believe that I was alone in the darkness. I never was. I see it now. He always was my safe place.

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I know, in eternity, that you have. Follow Me! A Personal Note From Sheila.

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Maybe a small mess. Maybe a big mess.