Photo by Sincerely Media on Unsplash

I often wonder what the late William Safire would say about modern English in the age of social media. I suspect that if he were (was?) still writing the On Lauguage column for the New York Times, it would be rife with commentary about the demise of proper English and the butchering of old “rules” on usage (use?). I accept that language evolves — we now use “impact” as a verb and say “graduate college” rather than the preferred “graduate from college,” but there are some rules that are, IMHO, etched in stone. When I come across violations of these…


Photo by Jian Xhin on Unsplash

So many things feel trivial right now: the pointless argument I had the other day with one of my kids, which online workout to do, the stains on the dining room chair cushions. Stupid, mindless, first-world, white-privilege issues that cross my mind during the day and mean absolutely nothing in this virus-infected, racist world.

I am sometimes ashamed that I think such drivel ever has any importance, that the stains on the cushions even matter, that the residual tension after an argument portends some deeper meaning. What difference does this stuff make? An unseen virus is sickening millions and cities…


Young Woman at a Window” by Salvador Dali c. 1925


Photo by Edwin Hooper on Unsplash

Some very unscientific predictions, wishful thinking and questions about how the world may be different when the pandemic ends.

People will no longer shake hands. We will elbow bump or give the peace sign or bow slightly or just say hello.

Wearing gloves and masks will be routine when venturing into crowded spaces. Like disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer, masks and gloves will we widely available at places like grocery stores.

People will cook more and entertain at home. Sharing a meal in a public space with strangers — at least for a while — will feel risky. …


Photo by Timothy Meinberg on Unsplash

“I’m getting my vagina waxed,” said a young woman one day when I asked if she had plans that afternoon.

Ouch! I thought. That sounds awful! Then I wondered if she had some kind birth defect, like that Wolfman syndrome where hair grows in unusual places.

I asked gently: “You’re getting your vagina waxed? Won’t that be painful?”

“No,” she replied. “I’ve been doing it for years and I’m used to it.”

Must be a millennial thing, I thought. I crossed my legs and felt relief that I was not going to endure that type of torture.

Then it dawned…


Vipassana and How I Learned to Cry

By M.A. Staley

Photo by nrd on Unsplash

It often starts like this: facial heat, stinging in my eyes, a hot hook in my belly, a quick gasp of air.

Usually, I focus on the emotion that comes first: a perceived insult, a wave of sadness, frustration during an intense moment. Rarely am I aware of the physical sensations; I pay attention to what I am thinking — my emotions — not what my body is feeling.

When the urge to cry arises, I often fight it. Crying makes my eyes puffy. My fair skin retains a blotchy…


Photo by Dan Gold on Unsplash

Your brain is a machine that’s running 24/7, and it depends on fuel; just like a car, high-quality fuel is better for the engine. Because the brain is so hard-working, it’s highly metabolic, and its function is based on the types of food you eat.

The emerging field of nutritional psychiatry has revealed that the quality of our food contributes to the state of our mental health. Much in the way food affects cardiovascular and intestinal health, it also affects mental health.

Food Fuels Your Brain

Your brain uses the protein, vitamins and other nutrients you consume to form the…

M. A. Staley

Psychotherapist, mom of four millennials, avid reader and animal lover, health, fitness and meditation fan.

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