a mama’s poem

Me and My Twin Girls | Photo by Carrie Fay Photography

Soon enough, you’ll be tall like a tree.
In the blink of an eye, you’ll be grown up like me.
Soon enough, you’ll set sail far away.
So today, let’s stay home together and play.

Today we won’t hurry.
Today we won’t rush.
All those things will come soon enough.

Soon enough, you’ll know all the rules.
You’ll learn all the subjects they teach us in schools.
Before too long, you’ll know just what to do.
So today, I won’t put any pressure on you.

Today we won’t hurry,
Today we won’t rush.
All those things will come soon enough.

Soon enough, Love, you’ll be in full bloom.
A butterfly bursting out from its cocoon.
Soon…


It turns out vulnerability is essential for connection.

Photo by Rodolfo Sanches Carvalho on Unsplash

When I was a kid, I had a lively imagination. My parents were divorced, and my dad was in prison. I couldn’t even begin to touch the pain buried inside, so I escaped into a vivid fantasy world. I had a subscription to one of those teeny-bopper magazines and spent every waking minute swooning over the boys on those pages.

I became particularly enamored with Taylor Hanson — the beautiful blonde boy with the keyboard and angelic voice. My inner world was consumed with daydreams of being kissed and adored. It was an emotional anesthetic.


I hadn’t seen my dad’s face or heard his voice since I was a kid

Photo by Hédi Benyounes on Unsplash

My mom loved my dad, and I think he really did try to love her back. Together, they brought me and my brother into the world, and they wanted to make us a happy family. ​

But our family broke and fell to pieces.


Photo by luizclas from Pexels

A well-known research study found that consistently grateful people are 25% happier than those who aren’t.

Yes, twenty-five percent!

If you want that kind of joy, then start practicing gratitude.

I say practice because gratitude is a skill. Humans tend to lean toward the negative, so we need to put in the work until thankfulness becomes second nature.

A solid first step is to start a gratitude journal.

Seriously, get a notebook and pen and start writing.

Have you ever read the book One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp? …


An artist for the outcast

Steve Malakowsky (Photo by Ryan Thurman )

Steve was the hippie dad I never had.

He told me all about his heroes — Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Mother Teresa, and Sophie Scholl.

Now, I want to tell you about him.

Steve Malakowsky’s message was simple… Hope.

Just typing his name lights a fire in my chest.

He was legendary with his cut-off jeans, bandanas, colorful beaded necklaces, and converse shoes.

He crossed over to the side of the street, where dirty fingernails hold cardboard signs. Where the sun turns human skin into leather. Where needles are shoved into desperate arms, and bodies are sold for the next hit.

He…


With all its pain, courage, and joy!

Judah Tolkein 2.19.2020 | Photo by Noleen Thurman

Hey, can I share my epic birth story with you?

After receiving twin baby girls via Cesarean Section three years ago, I wanted to try for an unmedicated vaginal birth.

But there was a problem.

Baby Judah was sunny side up — a not-so-ideal position.

I called my doula, Noleen, crying because I knew this could make for an exceptionally long and painful labor.

Noleen is a close friend. Several years ago, she invited me to witness the peaceful water birth of her fourth child. It was breathtaking.

When I became pregnant for the first time, she supported me through…


Now, her close friend is a Nazi’s daughter.

Hanna (left) and Verena (right) at the Judische Friedhof in Gemünd | Photo by Ryan Thurman

I have to tell you about my friend, Hanna Zack Miley. She’s petite with short, snow-white hair and eyes that emanate light. Her small frame contains an enormous soul.

Hanna’s beautifully written memoir, entitled A Garland for Ashes¹, tells one of the most important stories I’ve ever encountered, and it is the primary source material for this article.

In 2013, I had the privilege of joining Hanna on a trip to her hometown in Gemünd, Germany. …


She was screaming and emptying out her backpack all over the street.

Photo by Dick Saunders on Unsplash

I was sitting outside a coffee shop with my husband. Several others were around sipping coffee, chatting and working on computers. A few yards away, a petite woman with shoulder-length gray hair was screaming profanities — raging about how no one acknowledged or cared about her.

She was throwing the contents of her backpack all around and into the street — toiletries, a notebook, some clothes.
She went on like this for several minutes. I noticed others watching her. My heart was racing.

Should I go over there? The thought scared me. Would she turn her anger on me?

I whispered across the table, “Justan, should I go talk to her? What would Heidi do?” Heidi…

Amber Hunter

Sonoran Desert Dweller | Storyteller here at Medium | Songwriter at youtube.com/amberhuntermusic | Twin Mama | Spiritual Director | I write to grow.

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