Stories of a single mother raising four kids after her divorce while trying to reinvent herself, including dating again

A Moment to Give Thanks

“Hi, Jackie, this is Bruce Barton of the Los Altos Town Crier. I want to talk to you about this piece you just wrote.”

The year was 2010.  My first book, My Life in a Tutu, had recently been published and for some strange reason, the powers that be at the Relay for Life cancer event thought I could do the marketing for the cause. I’d never done something like this before and I wasn’t sure I was up to the task. Hearing his voice, […]

A Mother’s Birthright

 

Tiptoeing into our hotel room just past 1:00 am, with her Betty Davis hazel eyes sparkling brightly, my daughter Jenni instantly became confused when I had an explosive “Mommy moment.”

“Where in the hell have you been!” I yelled. Just like back in high school when she’d missed her curfew, I was furious. “This is Mexico, for God’s sake. Something bad could have happened to you and I wouldn’t know it.”

Lifting up my cell phone and waving it wildly in her face, I continued, […]

I’ll Have What She’s Having

Slipping into my newest outfit from Lululemon and my matching neon green hiking shoes, hair and makeup ready to go, I prepared for my six-mile walk from my daughter’s apartment to the Golden Gate Bridge and back again. As I made my way through Fort Mason, then onto Chrissy Field, I soaked in the beauty of the San Francisco Bay and the magnificent orange bridge ahead. Feeling energetic and alive, I was clipping along at a quick pace, happy with my progress, when all […]

My Year of Asking for Help

Standing in my bedroom in 1974, my mother schooled me once again with her steps for finding the perfect job. Having heard it all before, I wanted to scream. At twenty-two years old, I was now a college graduate and, in my snarky opinion, no longer needed her advice.

But, as I pounded the streets of San Francisco’s financial district in my long, homemade jean skirt covered in embroidered flowers and a peasant blouse that slid down my right shoulder, I began to wonder if […]

A Piece of Me

“Are you crazy?” a woman I’d just met began, perplexed. “Why bother writing if you can’t make a living at it?”

Back in 2001, when stories I had locked away in my brain found their way to paper, I felt God was giving me another talent to play with. From the time I was young, I was pulled to the arts: drawing, painting, sculpting, even sewing.  Later, music entered with my first guitar, and off I was in folk-, singing the songs of Peter, Paul […]

My Year as a Minimalist

Walking into my apartment, exhausted after a long day of negotiations on my recent listing in Los Altos, I stopped and looked around at the tiny space I called home.  Just a year ago, I sold my beautiful five-bedroom, 3,500-square-foot home—filled with memories and pictures of my four kids on every wall—and downsized to what felt like a 780-square-foot closet. My first thought was I should be crying over this change. Instead, I smiled.

Not long ago, I was a marketer’s dream. I found myself […]