And then, somehow she just knew, it was time to stop

This is what Riley looked like when I started blogging in 2006. She was six years old.

 Seth was four.

Over 3000 posts later (and many more never published), I feel it is time to stop.

Blogging has been a huge part of my life over these past few years. I needed it. I needed to express myself, and I needed the feedback from you lovely, lovely people. The kindness and support of my blog readers has buoyed me.

You donated roughly half the funds for Riley’s service dog. I know I already thanked every contributor personally, but again…THANK YOU.  It is impossible to say how much comfort Jingle brings to Riley’s life. How much joy she brings the whole family.

Lately, I feel pulled toward putting my creativity into something else. Maybe it is time for me to go back to work as a nurse? Maybe I need to write something different? Maybe Todd will take a job doing travel pharmacy and we’ll visit you as we go across the country in short stints? Maybe we’ll go completely off the grid? Maybe we’ll move to Kalamazoo? Maybe I’ll sit by a lake at sunset and just “be” with my family.

I don’t know.

But I am feeling like I need the space to figure it out. To look inside without the distractions of checking my blog for comments, taking time to post, deleting massive amounts of spam, being addicted to the blogging process so much I’m not present in my moment, because I’m thinking about how I’ll write about it later.

This is my beautiful girl now. Ten years old. Kind and pure of heart. Almost too old for her mom to be sharing all her biz.  

This is my boy. Joyful and wise beyond his years.

Dont tell him, but we’re surprising him with a puppy of his own when he turns eight next month. He’s wanted a Chihuahua for years, long before we ever started talking of a service dog for Riley. He so deserves it.  

This is who we have on hold.


Seth has no idea. He thinks he has to wait ’til he’s nine, because Riley was nine when she got her dog.  The thought of this surprise makes me giddy. I knew you’d want to know about it.

I asked HT if it was fair, to quit blogging when things are up in the air for us. He laughed and said jokingly,

“If they want to know what happens, they can buy the book.”

Forgive me, but I kind of like it this way. Having you envisioning us moving forward with open ended possibilites.

When you think of us, I hope you think of an imperfect woman who is really trying. A mother who loves her children fiercely, and strives to help them see their own goodness and value even as she struggles some days to see her own.

I hope you think of a kind and good man, and a joyful marriage.

I hope you picture Riley confident, and secure, coming into her own.


I hope you see Seth as the beacon of love and light he is.

I hope you imagine us always expanding, always becoming more of Who We Really Are.

Always loving.

I hope you know how much each and every one of you has meant to me. How much I appreciate you.

I hope you love yourself.

Thank you for being with me in this space.

Lovingly yours always,



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52 Responses to And then, somehow she just knew, it was time to stop

  1. Carrie Link says:

    I miss you already.




    And more love.

  2. goodfountain says:

    Oh, Michelle, I truly will miss your blog and your voice. I was a long-time reader before I started commenting.

    When you mentioned the other day that you were thinking of opening yourself up to a new creativity, I thought of an organization here that you would be a perfect fit for – and I daresay Riley would get a great deal out the youth programs as well.

    If you ever make it down to the southern part of our fair state, check them out.

  3. *m* says:

    You always know the right thing to do for your family. I have long admired the way you honor your instincts, and this is no exception.

    That said: I will miss your lovely family!

    Wishing you all continued growth and joy.

  4. Wow. I’ll miss reading about your family’s adventures. As I see so much of me at that age in Riley. But I’m so happy that you are doing what is right for you and your family. As people always tell mom “If you don’t take care of yourself you can’t take care of your family” So I’m sad your going but I’m glad your doing what you need to do!

  5. kario says:

    I will miss your insights and openness laid out there on the blog, but hope that we can continue to keep in touch via email. Know that whether or not you are getting comments on your blog, you are surrounded by a circle of love and light so that as you all move forward you are bathed in it.


  6. Jan says:

    It’s hard to express how much I will miss you. And I also want to say that I’m wishing you the best of good fortune as you and your family move forward in your lives.

  7. -e- says:

    Dang. Of course, you make so many well thought out and elegantly voiced points (as usual), that it is impossible for me to pretend that you are making a mistake (not that I get a vote). Still, I am pretty heartbroken. These long distance blog relationships can be so hard! Be well and happy in your adventures, and if you wind up in my town (portland), I hope I can meet you one day. I confess I will probably google you every now and then, so I know when the book comes out!

  8. jill says:

    i have checked your blog every day for the past few years. rarely commented. but read every post without fail. i will really miss you. and i’m so curious to know what happens with your family. i wish you all the best.

  9. Wanda says:

    Ditto Carrie. Please let us know when the book comes out…or the movie.

    What a cute puppy!

  10. dani poppins says:

    your insights, your wisdom, your reminders to move back to the center will be missed. much love to your family, may your journey be full of light.

  11. Meg says:

    I so respect you for listening to yoru inner voice and going with it. The blogosphere will be here if you ever decide it is the right time to resume. I wish I could be a fly on the wall when Seth gets his puppy! Oh, the joy! Hugs to you, my friend.

  12. Lydia says:

    Don’t really have words, but don’t want you to think I’m ignoring you. I’m here, I read, and I need some time to process… hope that’s okay.

  13. JoyMama says:

    Blessings as the journey continues!

  14. Kim says:

    “Oh NO!” is the first thing I thought when I read this! I LOVE reading your blog! I don’t want you to go away! I want to keep in touch and am so going to miss following your family through your journeys!

    But I get it. I do. I’ll try not to be selfish!

    Keep in touch girl.

    (oh–and that kitty looks just like one of ours and I had to do a double take at just how BIG he/she got in the more recent pic!

    And the PUPPY! YAY!!!!!!)


  15. Courtney says:

    Say it ain’t so!

  16. Heather says:

    A blessing before you go…love.

    An Old Irish Blessing
    May love and laughter light your days,
    and warm your heart and home.
    May good and faithful friends be yours,
    wherever you may roam.
    May peace and plenty bless your world
    with joy that long endures.
    May all life’s passing seasons
    bring the best to you and yours!

  17. Jerri says:

    Traveling mercies, Michelle. Blessings to you and the kids and HT.


  18. jess says:

    i refuse to believe this, so instead i’m just going to sit here happy in the idea that you will, much like barbra, stage any number of comebacks followed by final farewell tours. yup.

  19. K Fuller Yuba City says:

    Truly our loss. Like a good book that we don’t want to end. I will miss you.
    God Bless your family.

  20. drama mama says:

    Ditto Jess.

    We haven’t heard the last of you.

    Go get ’em!!!

  21. Jenny R says:

    I’ve really loved reading your blog posts over the years. Thank you for all you’ve shared.

  22. Niksmom says:

    Oh, I’m verklempt! (OK, not for long.) Michelle, I will picture you all inall of the ways you described and more. i will envision you reaching out and touching the lives of people you know and have yet to meet in “real life”…wherever that happens to take you.

    When you go, wherever you go, I hope you have a really, really, really large suitcase. You’re taking a tiny piece of many, many hearts.

    Love and Godspeed wherever your adventure called life takes you.

  23. naomi says:

    Mostly, I want to give a hug 🙂 I am so excited for you guys! Of course I will miss terribly your honest, compassionate, and funny writing voice. On the other hand I am thrilled that you will be able to be present in each moment.
    You have given me so much over the years. Thanks! xo

  24. graceonline says:

    Tears in my eyes. I will miss you. If ever you’re in San Francisco, please look me up. May there be thousands of unknown blessings, large and small, already on their way to you and your beautiful family. May you have always the strength you need, the money you need, the love you need to get you over every bump in the road. May joy grow.

  25. Kathi says:

    Love you. Will miss you. Your sharing has meant the world to me, you know that. Please keep in touch and drop me a line some time!


  26. mom says:

    Kind of like Forrest Gump at the end of his run. Love ya MOM

  27. Ang says:

    I will miss you! I lack the words to express how your honesty through your blog has helped me on my own journey. I believe you have a few friends in Portland should you ever make it out this way. Thank you for sharing your voice!

  28. K Fuller Yuba City says:

    So, I came back today hoping it had been a bad dream. I told my husband, I can’t believe the ending of a blog made me cry! LOL.(sorry for the fb laugh, I don’t know the code for a blog laugh)
    You may be surprised by how many people keep popping back in to see if you changed your mind.
    Maybe you could just update us once a month!
    God Bless!

  29. Amanda says:

    Oh BOO!! Where will I go before facebook now?? I’m a creature of habit – coffee, Fullsoul, facebook, autistic speaks.

    I’ve drifted away from my blog – just too busy living life to write about it so I get where you’re coming from…I’ve just read a book about a family with an autistic son (it was a present) and I felt it was something I could have written but I never thought anyone would want to read about it. Maybe that’s where you’re headed (many a true word, HT! 😀 )but whatever adventures lay in wait for you I wish you and yours light love and happiness, but know this – get my side of the pond and don’t get in touch you are dead meat!!

    Love ya!


  30. Susan Hendrickson says:

    I will truly miss reading your blog. i wish you all the best and hope to read posts from you on FB.

  31. amber says:

    You know how much you mean to me.
    So if you just drop off the face of the earth, I shall have a full inner-child mealt down. No pressure. 🙂

    I love you more than cake.

    🙂 oxox

    ps, that puppy is a perfect DOLL! yay Seth!! teeheehee

  32. amber says:

    “melt down”, I mean. See? Can’t even spell without you.


  33. John Ettorre says:

    You’ll be missed, but never forgotten.

  34. Wah! I’ll miss all of you so much, but I am so happy for you as you move forward in love and light. And thank YOU for all you have given to us, for all we have learned from you.

    P.S. Love those cheeks on 4-yr-old Seth!

    P.S. You know how I feel about your other writing projects! Let me know if you decide to give it a shot.

    P.S.S. Much love to you, my friend. xoxo

  35. Kim G. says:

    Just stopped by to catch up on you and the kids and, wow! I really do understand the need to take a break but your words of truth and love will be missed. I hope to keep in touch with you though – your family’s story is amazing and I would buy several copies of the book that tells it! Blessings to you all!

  36. juhi says:

    I feel like a friend is leaving! 🙂 You don’t know me at all but I’ve been a long time reader of your blog. I echo HT – You really DO HAVE TO GET A BOOK OUT. Your writings are lovely – fun, funny, wise and beautiful. I’ve learnt so much from your sharings. And enjoyed them so much too.

    I’m so going to miss reading your posts — I have tons of blogs on my google reader but the one which I ALWAYS check and ALWAYS read is yours! In fact I’m checking my reader after 10 days and the first blog, the first post I’m looking at is this!

    I’m going to envision you guys as having a rich and ripe, joy-filled life bound by love, laughter and hugs. All the best to you, HT, Seth & Riley.

    Love, Juhi


  37. Courtney says:

    At least the end of my puke green icon … every cloud …

    Seriously, I’ll live with the puke green if you keep blogging!

  38. Bonnie says:

    Wow. I have not posted or even looked at posts in a very long time, and tonight I decided to check out your blog, because you are one of my favorites. I would buy your book if you get that far! I kind of feel the same way about ending my blogging so I completely understand. I wish all the best to you and your family. It has been a pleasure of reading your honest posts.

  39. Mercurious says:

    The end of an era. Good luck to you all. I’ve enjoyed hearing your stories and meeting your family.

  40. K Fuller Yuba City says:

    Here I am again…always saved ~you~(the favorite) for last.

  41. drama mama says:


    Joke’s over.

    Please start writing again.

  42. M says:

    you sound confident that it’s time to step away from the blogging, so hopefully you’ll get lots of love and support. you certainly get it from me. it’s hard not to be sad, though. you, your strong writing voice, these stories about your sweet ones…i’ll miss them all very much. but again, i think everyone will support the decision.

    you, michelle, have been officially released into the wild. best wishes

  43. Julie A says:

    Lurker de-lurking here through the small tears (isn’t the web weird–you don’t know me, I don’t really know you–and yet the thought of you leaving overwhelms me a little). I have often thought that I would love living down the street from you–to talk about the Law of Attraction when you come visit, our dogs playing in the yard, our kids playing together. I’m a special education teacher who has always LOVED the way you can describe what life for Riley is like (if anyone really can), absolutely adore the way you can talk with her about all things metaphysical and found the addition of Jingle most, most interesting. It’s purely selfish to wish you to stay so I’m going to honor my emotions of sadness and fear and like all the others—-wait for the book 🙂

    Julie A.

  44. Lolly says:


    I salute your decision to know when to stop. It’s a rare gift to be able to know when that time has come, and actually do it!

    I have learned a great deal from you and enjoyed getting to know you and your family through this blog.

    I miss you and your writing.

    God speed and good luck with your future adventures.

    Waiting for the book – the audio version… (:)

  45. rhemashope says:

    thinking of you and your beautiful family tonight. that last picture is just how i imagine you. LOVE!

  46. Kathee says:

    Michelle I have learned so much from your blog. I was originally following because of your Riley posts. But lately I was reading for your posts about the way you make your marriage work and keep your family together (in every sense of the word). I have learned how to be a better, more paitent and kind partner to my husband. I have also learned how to make more time for myself and be a better mom. I hope you continue to write and document your life (even if it isn’t for the public!). I would have loved if my mom had documented some of the day to day things that you have posted – it would have been great to read as an adult. Thank you and best to you all.

  47. Stagmom says:

    Like the end of the Harry Potter series. Perfect. 🙂 And a beginning to boot. Perfecter. And a friend like you. Perfectest.

  48. Daniel says:

    Wow this is the word when I saw those cute photographs.Little dog looks innocent.Your little girl looks beautiful and it is interesting to know about that surplice.All are very nice family photographs.

  49. Sally says:

    OHHHHHHHHHHHHH, Wow, hmmm, well, I guess I don’t know what to say. Will you keep up with me? I LOVE the little pup you have picked out for Seth. Paige, who you met at training, has a long haired Chihuahua and now they have adopted another chihua hua that had been abused, and her dad had to fix her legs, twice. He will love that little thing! Well, you know where to find me.
    You know we love you, and the Riley, and the Seth, and the Todd, and the Jingle. If you do the traveling thing, come see us in Iowa, and check out my Fair pics on FB!
    Lots of love.

  50. -e- says:

    oh dear! prozac spam ads in comments? sigh. this is really sinking in now… you are not here anymore… be well!


  51. Lo says:

    Will miss you and reading but just know your amazing adventures with your beautiful family will continue…with love!

  52. Kellyology says:

    So behind on my blog reading, but had to post anyway. Loved reading you, but completely understand. I’ve been feeling a little that way myself lately. Good luck with your new endeavors and lots of love!

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