I fear I look like a big ball of nothing. A ball of garbage. A tumbleweed. 


I went to Holy Yoga the other day. A Christian-themed, donation-based yoga class. As the teacher guided me through sun salutations, and the music swirled around me, tears leaked from the corners of my eyes.

I just can’t seem to figure out why. 

Why has life been sweet to me? 


I have been trying to make some decisions regarding an MFA (Masters in Fine Arts, for Creative Writing) for three years now. I go back and forth, back and forth.

You don’t need an MFA to be a writer. A degree won’t give me talent. It’s going to cost a lot of money (i.e. loans.) 

But. You would have an informed mentor. The program would impart structure on your writing life. You would have to create dedicated time to the craft. The craft of writing. The language I best understand.

Indecision results in roadblock.

When I lost my job unexpectedly, I hightailed it to the couch to cry. To ask God why.

And when he didn’t answer, I picked up the computer and filled out the application that I’d had sitting open on it for weeks.


I turned in my FAFSA yesterday, because the school acceptance letter told me that was the next step. I feel 17 again, like I did when I filled out papers to get out of my hometown. Just fill in this box here, and these three packets here, and we’re going to hand you a ticket outta here. I feel hopeful.


Does a tumbleweed have a predestined trajectory?

Watch me while I roll, it says, to the wind. 

While I gather, I get bigger.    

Watch me while I roll.


4 thoughts on “Tumbleweed

  1. Hi Kelly,
    I’m proud of you and even though I don’t know you well, I’ve always liked you. At the same time I am somewhat unbiased when I read your writing, which I thoroughly enjoy.
    I understand your fear, I have been doing grad school one class at a time, working part time, and being a mom for two years. I’m lucky to be able to do it, but was pretty terrified starting my first class. I know you can do it too.
    Have you read the book My Antonia by Willa Cather?
    I had to read it for my sophomore year high school English class. I had a phenomenal teacher even though at the time I didn’t fully get what she was teaching us. She drilled in us that the main character had “lost her ball of clay”. She went so far as to throw a ball of clay across the room. She repeated this over and over. I can’t think of a better point for young women in high school to understand- we women must keep our selves, our ball of clay, we must cherish it, nurture it, and love it.
    I’m looking forward to hearing more about your journey.

    • Angela!! Thank you so so much for your words. And motherfucking powerful words, at that. I love the ball of clay reference. I will read that book – I’m grateful for your making me aware of it! Good for you for going back to school! It is hard to remember – but I believe it’s a must as well — to feed our needs. Our children will only be better off for it. Thank you for reading my writing and reaching out to me. I am grateful for it. 🙂

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