MONDAY MUSINGS

A book that has caused me to muse on faith and its various manifestations for the past few weeks is Anne Lamott’s Traveling Mercies. Published in 1999 by this renowned essayist and novelist, it’s messages are still just as relevant as ever.

As one critic said, Lamott can be “…both reverent and irreverent in the same lifetime…sometimes in the same breath.” She gives the reader stories of her life and about her son, Sam, at an early age.  It is “tough, personal, affectionate, wise, and very funny.” It covers from her troubled past through her enlightened life today.  My favorite essay was from the “Fambly” section, titled “Mom”.  In it Lamott writes, “In the photo (of her mother and herself) I am looking over at her with enormous gentleness because I sometimes feel this…But I was only feeling this about half the time that day. The rest of the time, I was annoyed…she is not at all whom I would have picked at the Neiman-Marcus Mommy Salon.”

Lamott makes the reader smile; she makes her/him tear up, but she always makes the reader want to read on.  I rationed my reading to one or two essays a day, for I wanted to savor each one, to ruminate and muse on the kernel of each one, to restore my faith and to understand the otherness of friends’ brands of faith and in whom/what they have faith. Lamott allowed me to do just that.

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Author: Rae Longest

This year, I will have been a member of AAUW (American Association of University Women) for fifty years, a life time member (which means my fellow AAUW members will begin to pay my annual dues. (ha ha) In the 80's we began a book group to share our love of reading, books,and fellowship with other women and girls who loved the same. We resurrected the group on-line in September of 2015 and went on from there (See "Introduction",first blog). This is my first experience at blogging or publishing anything and is becomes more fun with each blog posted. I am currently teaching as an adjunct at The University of Houston Clear Lake. This makes my 27th year there after three years at Alvin Community College and an almost-twenty year career as a classroom teacher with Alvin Independent School District. Reading and writing are "in my blood" just like teaching is. I hope you enjoy the blog.

5 thoughts on “MONDAY MUSINGS”

    1. Her honesty in her essays about herself were sometimes almost brutal to read. She had sunk so low and was so dependent on drugs and alcohol (and men) that she was especially hard on herself looking back. However, it was so inspiring to understand how far she had come, especially “spiritually” in her life’s journey. Each essay had so much to offer, that as I finished each one I wanted to stop and think about it and her. It gave me a new compassion for those who have been through such valleys and to help me to grow to become less judgmental and more loving.

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