I've moved!

I'm still writing; you just won't find me here any longer. If you want to keep reading my writing, head over to mollyflinkman.com. I'll keep a cup of coffee warm for you.

Saturday, May 21, 2016


word of the day: last \ˈlast\ at the end; to continue in time

Last is kind of a funny word when I really think about it. A word to mean both the end and the continuance of something. There’s power in those definitions which I will likely continue to ponder, but the base definition works perfectly for the purpose of this particular musing.

The last wordy musing (at least in this specific space).

My brain has always worked a little like a hamster wheel; it often spins endlessly with all my various thoughts bumping around disjointed and frustrated because I can’t put an order to them. Since the inception of this blog in 2010, Jake has sensed this spinning many times and has often said to me, “I think you need to write.” (His other highly effective suggestion? “Why don’t you just go walk around Target for an hour?” He knows me so well.)

We’ve been in Cleveland for almost a year now, and writing has continued to served as a sort of personal therapy to help me process the fact that change is certainly a constant presence in my life. But, as I have continued to spin the hamster wheel in my mind, I have started to feel like I need a new space--a broader place to air out my thoughts.

So, this is the last of my Wordy Musings (it deserved a sense of closure, I think).

That being said, my thoughts and reflections about my quest to live this life well will certainly last (the hamster wheel is always spinning, after all), so I created a new space for them HERE.

I’ve been writing and posting in this new space for a few weeks while I try to reevaluate why I put thoughts out in a public sphere. I mean who really cared about all those Oscar Parties I used to throw?

But then I remember the ways my thoughts connected me to people in ways which wouldn’t have been possible if I’d kept the words to myself. Text messages and comments and conversations which reminded me that I’m not alone in this thing. And that’s what it’s really about, isn’t it? Using our words and stories and experiences to connect to each other, support each other, and point back to the One who ultimately uses the words for His good.

So, I’m going to keep telling my story, and I’d love it if you’d come along with me.

Thursday, February 11, 2016


word of the day: render \ˈren-dər\ to cause to be or become; to give in return or retribution

I'd like to tell you how this word first got stuck in my head, but I can't remember. I thought I read it in this book, but after a particularly exhaustive search, I realized that I didn't. It's times like these where I wish there was some sort of search history for your brain. Some kind of web that connected the order of all your thoughts (like how IMDB can show you how you got all the way to Saved by the Bell: The College Years from The West Wing.) Am I the only person who wishes my thoughts could take shape as a color coded flow-chart? 

I recognize that none of this is really relative, but given the 45 minutes I just spent trying to dig up a single word from my memory banks (to no avail), I'm having trouble letting go. 

Anyway, I've been thinking about render for awhile. Those multiple meaning words always get me, you know? 

Sometimes when you render something, you change it. You melt something down, or you change the state of it. Back in the late 1900s, we used to burn CDs for each other, and you had to wait while the disc was "rendering." 

But "render" also involves giving something back in return. The act of changing and the act of giving back. It's powerful word play in my mind. 

So, toddlers. 
I am realizing that the task of raising tiny humans is both isolating and unifying all rolled up into one exasperating breath. It is unifying because, of course, you are not alone. There are those who have gone before you--the moms who have lived it and testify to the notion that "this too shall pass." And there are those in the thick of it with you--the moms who are living it alongside you for the first time and can commiserate when you send a single text made up of only angry, red-faced emojis.   
But as many people as you surround yourself with (and believe me, I have gathered myself a small army), often you're physically alone in the hardest of moments. And, advice goes a long way, but no one knows your people like you know your people. The parenting gig is weighty. If I get this wrong, I can't blame the army. Because I'm the one who is here. Who knows my own kids.
It's all part of the rendering process.  It reminds me of the excerpt of A Million Miles in a Thousand Years that I referenced here toward the end of our medical school journey. This continues to be the hard work of the middle. And, if I keep paddling, my character will be rendered. Molded into something better (Lily and Norah's will too, for that matter.).

And when you do this, when you gain a little foresight and look at the grand scheme of things, then you're able to render aid to someone else. That army of moms who has gone before me? Their help is invaluable because they kept paddling through. They didn't give up when the going was tough. They allowed the hard work of the middle to make them better and then used the rendering to render in return. 

Similarly, I have felt this impact in every season of my life: high school, college, teaching, medical school, residency. There have been people all along the way who have used their own experiences to shape mine. 

That's the stuff to be thankful for. And that's the stuff to shoot for. To embrace the rendering of my own life so that down the road I can render help to someone else's.
Until then, we'll just keep paddling over here. Wading through the muddy waters and giving each other a lot of grace along the way.