bekah brunstetter
Bekah Brunstetter I care deeply. About a lot of things. Like really, really deep. Ow
playwright in brooklyn, NY

How to Actually Help

September 15th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by the awfulness of things and so I dig my head into the sand of my own nonsense, instead of Helping, because how can I actually Help? But then there are orgs like Miry’s List (miryslist.org) that ACTUALLY ENABLE REGULAR PEOPLE TO ACTUALLY HELP, in a real and meaningful way. Basically this incredible woman Miry met a refugee family, and started an Amazon wish List for them. Three years later, her organization has helped OVER 350 REFUGEE FAMILIES from the Middle East with clothes, goods, housing, basically anything they need. To raise money for all of these services, Miry’s hosts Supper Clubs, at which a refugee fam cooks a giant traditional meal, and other people who want to Do Something can pay to come and eat, hear about the organization, and learn the family’s story. ALL OF THIS TO SAY, Mack invited me to help out with one of these dinners last night, and I’m so glad I did.

After everyone eats (and eats, and eats), the Cook tells the diners about he and his family’s story. Last night it was Bashir, from Afghanistan, who worked with the US Army as a translator. The Taliban threatened his life, so the US gave he and his family Visas — but basically no other support. They were literally homeless when someone put him touch with Miry, who LITERALLY PUT HE AND HIS FAMILY IN A HOTEL UNTIL THEY GOT ON THEIR FEET.

What I love about this organization is that the results are so tangible, so immediate. Like for example YOU! Right NOW! Can go to miryslist.org and buy things for a family from an Amazon wishlist. RIGHT NOW!

Takeaways:

  • Spend some time in service in others
  • When Mack invites you to something, say yes
  • GO TO miryslist.org and fulfill a wish WHY ARE YOU STILL READING THIS

Posted in food, the whole world | No Comments »

Actual Coping Mechanism

August 9th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

Amnesty international has issued a travel warning for those traveling to your country of residence / Kids are sobbing for their parents / your fertility shotz are making you want to rage and scream, or maybe it’s just the World? /  You’re behind on Everything / Well, most things / Your donations feel empty / where are they actually going? / is there enough money? Is there TOO much money? / Why does your Pastor drive a car that’s falling apart and yours gleams with excess? / QUICK BUY AN EARRING ORGANIZER AND SPEND A VERY VERY LONG TIME ARRANGING YOUR EARRINGS ONTO IT / GIVE YOURSELF A FALSE SENSATION OF STRUCTURE

AHHHHH THAT’S BETTER WAIT NO IT’S NOT

 

Posted in a lot, ha, the whole world, the worst, things that I Have, whining, worrying, YAY | No Comments »

What I need to Hear

July 8th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

Yesterday, a Sunday morning:

  • I wake up, feeling a need to go to church and be quiet and reflective and pray
  • I Go to church
  • Okay, yes, I get there a few minutes late, but I take my program humbly, receptively, sneak in through the back door
  • I WALK RIGHT IN MID-DEDICATION OF BABIES
  • (For the non-church going readers: this is when new parents bring their babies on stage and dedicate themselves, as parents, to raising their Baby in the church, and the pastor blesses the baby, and the baby pretends to answers questions and all of the childless mothers of Gilead in the sanctuary turn to brownie batter and melt out of their seats and die)
  • I consider TURNING THE OTHER WAY AND RUNNING OUT OF THE CHURCH, and being quite noisy about it on purpose, maybe slamming through some doors, so that everyone knows my pain, and then sits there, putting two and two together
  • I decide, instead, to quietly, respectfully take a seat towards the back and cry quietly, respectfully while the babies are dedicated
  • I Listen to the Pastor as he tells the congregation that this couple in particular prayed and prayed for their daughter Rose; that she was a gift, not an assumption
  • I realize how badly I needed to hear this
  • I sit there, quietly, hearing everything else I needed to hear

Posted in a lot, faith, ha, hmmmmm, the future, the making of babies, the whole world, the worst, whining, women | No Comments »

Path to Healing

May 9th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

I can’t meditate for more than 3 minutes without getting distracted, and the few times I’ve done acupuncture I’ve just laid there watching the clock and wondering things like ‘Am I healing? Is it happening? What’re we doing right now?’  and last night after my D&C I had an entire bag of Haribo gummies and ice cream for dinner.  I am no Earth Mother or Mother of the Earth, I am not Zen or Chill, but RIGHT NOW I WILL USE THE WORDS ‘PATH TO HEALING,’ and boldly declare that going wide with our fertility struggles has comforted me beyond my greatest expectations. Last night, Haribo gummy cherries hanging out of my mouth, I read hundreds of messages received from friends and strangers, bold and honest messages about fertility struggles and successes. AND IT HAS GIVEN ME LIFE. Thank you to all who share and continue to share. Here was mine:

Last weekend, we had our second miscarriage. I know I’m supposed to tuck this away, share with just close family and friends, compartmentalize and get back to work, which I’ve done before. But this time, I’m sharing here to challenge any and all notions that getting pregnant is CHARMING AND ADORABLE AND JOYFUL AND WHIMSICAL, and only these. For us, and for so many other women and couples, it has been a nightmare. It’s long and stressful and expensive and painful and terrifying. I’ve met parts of myself I never knew, gross bits of rage and frustration and jealousy and sadness. My hope and faith have withered. But I’ve also been so moved by the women who have opened up to me about the absurdity and sometimes hilarity of their own losses and journeys. And I want to do anything I can to help remove any of guilt and shame that comes with this horrible yet INCREDIBLY REGULAR thing / 20 PERCENT OF PREGNANCIES END IN MISCARRIAGE / GRIEVING PEOPLE ARE ALL AROUND YOU / HI, I AM ONE OF THEM. I also share this here because I’m longing for any personal stories, things like I had five miscarriages and now my toddler keeps grabbing my phone out of my hand! And / or my uterus is made of construction paper and now it’s full of twins! Or even, I am going through this fucking bullshit too, would you like to get together and throw bottles of wine against a wall? Feel free to DM me. I’m grateful for anything anyone feels like sharing, but mostly grateful for Morrison, who is the most completely amazing partner that has ever lived.

Posted in a dream is a wish your heart makes, a lot, babies, sucking, the future, the making of babies, the whole world, the worst, wanting, what my friends are doing, women, words, worrying | No Comments »

how to know you married the right person

May 1st, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

Yesterday, a Shade guy and his two sons came by to take measurements for some outdoor shades, and as he pulled (barreled?) into our driveway, his brakes failed, and he rammed my car into the garage, taking out one of Morrison’s sideview mirror en route. I was in our bedroom, above the garage,  and the sound can only be described as ENTIRE WORLD GOING THROUGH TRASH COMPACTOR. Morrison runs outside, sees my car like so:

And I hear him through the window, the first thing he says: Are you guys okay? Because he knows what we both know: Cars can be fixed. Garage doors can be fixed. People cannot always be fixed. People > Cars. Morrison > Most people.

Posted in a lot, love, MAWWAGE., oh nooo, the whole world, things, things that I Have | No Comments »

there is nothing like a dame

March 30th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

Earlier this week, I found myself getting my hair done next to a stunningly beautiful woman, like a woman beautiful not because of makeup, but because of inner life glow, alive eyes, white white teeth and voice like a British bell kept safe in a museum. She was trying decide which haircut to get, as she’d narrowed it to down to something like 6 different styles, and I said Well you could always grow five more heads and get all of them! And she threw her head back and laughed, so fully and deeply that I felt like I’d won a prize, and just for a second I think I became every man throughout history, in Rome and France and in every production of Guys and Dolls, who lived to make a beautiful woman laugh.

Posted in a lot, the whole world, tout, trying too hard, women, YAY | No Comments »

A Bird on the Hand

March 22nd, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

Yesterday, while surrounded by the comforts of the controlled environment in which I live, I found myself thinking about how rarely I step out of my comfort zone. MAYBE I take risks while writing? PERHAPS? But mostly I tend to make choices that keep me in situations in which unexpected things rarely happen, I have control over the variables of the environment, and I mostly interact with people who are like me. And I thought ,WHY, AS A WRITER, WOULD I EVER LIVE THIS WAY? Which is why, last night, over a controlled and comfortable dinner, Morrison and I signed up for a falconry class, because if A PEREGRINE FALCON (THE WORLD’S FASTEST ANIMAL) LANDING ON YOUR HAND IS NOT THE VERY DEFINITION OF STEPPING OUT OF ONE’S COMFORT ZONE THEN I TRULY DO NOT KNOW WHAT IS BUT YOU GUYS IT’S DEFINITELY NOT EXPERIMENTING WITH NEW WAYS TO EAT SWEET POTATOES OR READING BOOKS THAT SHOUT YOUR OWN BELIEFS BACK AT YOU.

Posted in a lot, ha, hmmmmm, i am lucky, i am scared, the whole world, things that I Have, tout, trying too hard, YAY | No Comments »

I am Guilty Of

March 14th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

There’s a thing I do, as a contemporary robot person with robot computer phone brain and human heart, that I would like to stop doing. And so, like most things that I don’t enjoy about myself, I’ll lay it here, in hopes of embarrassing myself into Change.  Here it is: I make moral judgements on News Things before I’ve fully read about them. (It’s also a thing that we maybe all do, that maybe we should all stop doing.) I make these judgements quickly, based on a headline or a skim of an article that I cram into a tiny section of unoccupied time,  so I can participate in conversations and outrage and jokes,  so that I don’t feel left out, or alone. But WHAT IF INSTEAD, I waited until I’d thoroughly read up on the Thing,  before making my judgements, adding my commentary? Would I spend more time reading and informing myself, less time commenting? Isn’t my being informed on whatever the thing is more important that whatever commentary I might add which, especially if I’m not informed, is most likely not different from everyone else’s? And DID I JUST FIX THE WORLD?

 

Posted in a lot, arrogant art things, awesome, generally, hmmmmm, how interesting, i am a grown up, the whole world, words, worrying | No Comments »

Beverly, Forever

February 18th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

As I relish / writhe in this life phase I’ll call ‘pre-kid aware,’ in which I don’t have kids yet but want them, and so think of all life things in terms of having or not having kids — one of the thing that’s struck me is that once I create a kid, I create a Person separate from myself, who then grows and forgets me, for at least a little while. That’s one of the great big sad and strange things about being a human — you have your own brain and your own will that sometimes carries you away from the people that made you. But somehow, on my Mom’s side of the family, our matriarch Beverly has stayed a focal point if not GODDESS for all of her granddaughters, no matter where we are at in our lives. And so, when we were asked if we could make it to Maryland to surprise our Grandma for her 90th birthday, naturally we all said yes, and the result was THIS FACE, WHICH WAS WORTH A THOUSAND PLANE TICKETS, WHICH WAS THANKFULLY NOT ACCOMPANIED BY A HEART ATTACK:

Literally every granddaughter, daughter, and daughter in law made her way to Beverly’s surprise tea, except for two who are out of the country. She cried, we cried, we heard stories from church friends about how she could talk to a lamppost, how she opened her house to everyone and anyone, then we all went to said house, gathered around her like she was a Queen and listened to her regale her tales from a life as a young Flight Attendant, when we were all just dust.

I marveled at the individual attention she always gave and continues to give to each of us.  I think that’s her greatest trick, her greatest gift. I know I’ve made hundreds of grandchildren, Bekah, but right now, it’s just you and me. 

Beverly, Forever.

 

 

Posted in a lot, family, generally, i am lucky, the future, the whole world | No Comments »

Taking Notes

January 27th, 2019 by Bekah Brunstetter

As an adult, I have a sort of casual, magical  relationship with church. I like the feeling of showing up when I want, wearing what I want, crying because no one knows me, leaving after I slip some money into the plate. It’s a nebulous relationship, still forming, still deciding itself, but I keep feeling pulled back, especially when I need to pray. But most of all I think I REALLY RESPOND TO THE SERMON NOTES FORMS:

Clean and crisp and waiting for words that won’t elude you. All you have to do is pay attention. It reminds me of elementary and middle school when to find the answer, the One answer, you just have to Listen. I always leave the sermon with some words that resonate for the rest of the week. Today: ‘Step into Fear. Know that God was there before you.’  And also, from Mother Theresa: ‘To be faithful in Little Things is a great thing.’ And ‘one time, on Palm Sunday, we let a Donkey in the church. Are YOU the donkey in the church? ‘

 

Posted in faith, hmmmmm, i am lucky, life, the whole world | No Comments »

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