“Why I Came” in Commonweal

My short piece, “Why I Came,” is up at Commonweal. It’s a brief recounting of my conversion to Catholicism, and an explanation of why I stay in this faith community in this particularly difficult, troubling, and trying time. I’m grateful to Katherine Lucky for her guidance and encouragement with this piece.

The Sense of the Story on The Common Reader

My short article, “The Sense of the Story” is up on The Common Reader blog today.

Back in January, Michaella Thornton’s in-depth look into how layoffs hit women and mothers (Pinkslips: How Layoffs Create Double Jeopardy for Working Mothers) included part of my experience of getting laid off from St. Louis Community College.

“The Sense of the Story” is a response, not exactly to her article, but to the experience of telling her my story and having it included in a wider story of working women, pay inequality, and sexism. I’m grateful for Michaella’s article, the chance to share my experience, write a response, and yes, even for the layoff itself.

Rejection Slip: National Catholic Reporter

Rejection Slip is a series of pieces I submitted for publication that were rejected by the editors. Oh well.

I submitted the following piece to NCR in December, in response to a multi-part discussion on Catholics who have left the church. The discussion began with Melinda Henneberger’s USA Today column (November 2018) about why she left the church. Henneberger followed up in December with an article in NCR about the responses she fielded from that first article. Then, NCR published a respnse to Henneberger by a priest, Fr. David Knight, that they called “smart” and “thoughtful.” For the reasons I outline below, I found his response to be shallow, arrogant, and fallacious.

Continue reading “Rejection Slip: National Catholic Reporter”

Revisiting the STLCC Layoffs

Michaella A. Thornton’s article, “Pink Slips: How Layoffs Create Double Jeopardy for Working Mothers,” revisits the 2018 STLCC layoffs in the context of how layoffs impact women more severely, how gender roles and expectations shape our responses to layoffs, and how layoffs neither help businesses nor refrain from punishing women harder than men. I was so pleased to be interviewed for the article, and to appear among Michaella’s intensive research, compelling narrative, and palpable passion.

The layoffs received some news coverage in 2017 and 2018. But somehow it never felt like the full story was told. I’m grateful for Michaella’s article–it’s willingness to continue reckoning with this story and re-examining this an wound, to put our story into a larger context, to shine a light on the often overlooked layoff disparities for women and mothers.

For  more background and context, here’s some of the layoff news coverage from 2017-2019.

from Inside Higher Ed

from The Riverfront Times

from St. Louis Magazine

The Riverfront Times again

Multiple pieces from The Scene, Forest Park’s campus student newspaper

Outstanding coverage from The Montage, Meramec’s campus student newspaper

from The South County Times

My Op-Ed column in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Chancellor Pittman’s response to my op-ed

A joint faculty response to Chancellor Pittman


Reading at The Dial Recap

I had the great pleasure of reading at The Dial Bookshop in Chicago, and being in the company of fellow readers (left to right) Emily Jungmin Yoon, Lani Montreal, and Suman Chhabra. IMG_5655.JPG

Their poems about motherhood, daughterhood, race, gender, teaching, queerness, and numinous spaces were all breathtaking. Thank you for the beautiful space, words, and gathering. And thanks to Tim Moore and Kundiman for organizing the event.

See more pics: https://www.instagram.com/p/BqijyMQn9sB/