How Illinois’ strict gun laws saved my life

It was a typical pandemic Sunday. My husband and I both looked at the clock and knew it was time to get up, but neither of us wanted to. So I turned onto my side and my husband put his arm around…


She stares at the black and white picture of her mother as a toddler that has adorned the living room wall of the family farm house for as long as she could remember. The frame a sort of metal with curlicues running throughout. It had always seemed overly grandiose. Now…


Chapter 1

I jog the last flight of stairs to the downstairs living room in my grey joggers and favorite black tank. When I reach the bottom I find my best friend Zara Patel sitting on the couch, scrolling through social media posts with her right hand while delicately holding…


Experts agree that too much of the same is a bad thing. This theory also applies to running. If all of your workouts are long and slow, you aren’t going to build any speed. Alternatively, if all your workouts are fast HIIT types, you are more likely to wear yourself…


CHAPTER 1

I throw open the door of the upscale Mexican restaurant, running at least ten minutes late. Handing Declan and Seamus off to our sitter turned out to be trickier than expected. The boys are always so clingy on Friday nights after a long week at daycare. I hate…


Five Pilates exercises that have helped me become a stronger runner

Shoulder Bridge

I started running the summer of my eighth-grade year. I was desperate to make my high school soccer team and thought increasing my speed and endurance would give me an advantage over the other girls. Turns out I wasn’t…


Divorces are expensive

As I stare at the piles of paper and Manila folders in front of me my heart rate quickens and sweat beads trickle down my neck and onto the collar of my lavender blouse. If inspiration doesn’t strike soon I’m going to have to put my suit…


How a low key spring break can still be a lot of fun

With all that kids have missed out on over the last year, there can be some self-imposed pressure to make spring break 2021 extra special. But with Covid cases rising again, there are some, like myself, who…


A fictional story about the famous Inez Clark memorial

Having said goodbye to her own daughter, Moira makes her way across Graceland Cemetery to the famous memorial to Inez Clark. Moira couldn’t quite say what compelled her to visit this little girl’s grave on each of her trips to the…


A tribute to my feminist hero on her birthday

My mother’s 84th birthday is this weekend and I can’t be with her. I’m still waiting to be fully vaccinated before joining in big gatherings. But I find myself thinking today about all of the amazing things my mother has taught…

Melissa Manning

Recovering lawyer. Mom of 3. First novel Darkness Drops Again published June 2020. Pilates instructor. Runner.

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