It happened at 3:15 P.M., November 12, 1935, a breech birth at St. Mary’s Hospital in St. Louis, Missouri—a rough experience for Mother and me, but we survived: she to ninety-nine years and three months. On subsequent birthdays when older, I honored her over lunch at Sadie’s or The Crossings, her favorite restaurants. Again, I heard the story. 

So this day, I completed my eighty-fifth year of life; from this vantage point, a gift, despite decades of rheumatoid arthritis, with its corrective joint surgeries. Obsessing over treatment modalities, all of which were ineffective, also flooded my psyche with anxiety and stunted my psycho-social growth. Most of my life, I searched for my true identity, even achieved three advanced degrees and certification to work with the elderly poor. Interesting that they readily shared their stories, with no prompting from me. In my depths, I wondered if I had a story.

Until retirement in 2001, my life felt splintered, a fact corroborated by dream work with a Jungian analyst who insisted I begin writing. I did so. Memories flooded me, and with them, the next right word began to surface, startling evidence of my Inner Writer. I would write myself into new wholeness.

Years passed. It felt like taking dictation as two self-published memoirs and my blog emerged.