Linnea Ashley on December 15th, 2011

Growing up I never understood the story of the prodigal son. I mean, I knew the story, but I always identified more with the son who never strayed. Far from the perfect child, i was – however – the contrast to my sister. She was the popular cheerleader full of potential who was content (at […]

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Linnea Ashley on November 15th, 2011

It wasn’t a happy conversation. My family gathered in the kitchen – a rare occurrence now that my sister and I are grown and gone from the house, her married with a family of her own. But there we were, my parents and sister seated casually around the glass dining table cluttered with the day’s […]

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Linnea Ashley on November 12th, 2011

Reconciling my own feelings about working overseas in development is difficult enough. Is there harm done? To what extent? Is there good? Does it make up for the bad? I don’t believe good intentions are enough, that something is always better than nothing. Sometimes the cure can be worse than the disease. But how do […]

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Linnea Ashley on November 9th, 2010

I was returned to my college days, my peace corps ones. returned to the joy that a tiny slip of paper in my mailbox can conjure. Yesterday I got a package from my parents. And the timing couldn’t have been more perfect, a day more in need of pepping. I almost didn’t trudge down to […]

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Linnea Ashley on October 13th, 2010

She lay there. Still. Mechanical breath raising and lowering her chest with a slight pause – a stutter in the system. The monitors flashed green and red, moaned indecipherably, whirs and screeches that – unmet by rushing attendants – were usual sounds. T’s head bandaged tightly at the crown, odd pinkish coloring against her soft […]

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Linnea Ashley on September 1st, 2010

Iganga Town, Uganda September 1, 2010 “I’m thinking about Columbia.” My mother’s perfect composure cracked and she whispered fiercely, “why do you always have to go so far away?” I’d just gotten back from South Africa and my mother mistook my interest in Columbia, for graduate school, with an interest in South America. She was […]

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Linnea Ashley on July 22nd, 2010

Despite being well versed, hell- down right prolific, in both the art and execution of farewells; they wear on me. Not simply the act of saying goodbye – but the brief intervals between the ends…the end of the job or travel that has occupied my time for a eight months or two years and the […]

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Linnea Ashley on March 26th, 2010

Too much time had passed. And while we’d connected briefly (and infrequently) by phone, the tangible is better than the verbal, especially where family is concerned. so I headed south to see the Brights and bask in the laughter and acceptance they so readily offer. Of course there was food – my chronic hunger is […]

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Linnea Ashley on February 1st, 2010

“how old is he?” The he in question was toddling about, intermittently crying for no particular reason and grinning at me from behind his cohort Samuel. “he is two.” “and…?” I pointed at Samuel. “he is 18 months. Breastfed,” my neighbor said pointing at Samuel, “not breast fed,” she declared of the other one. I’m […]

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Linnea Ashley on January 13th, 2010

I’ve been trying to write about my Brightspots. Words evade me despite the sincerest appreciation I have. And appreciation is dull and lifeless in my explanation. But I continue to try to clarify how family is sometimes blood and sometimes choice. And that far away from home and the people who love you because you […]

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