Written for the Pandemic Writing Project with Lighthouse Writers and History Colorado.

At the beginning of the year we will never forget, I was really sick. So much so I posted, “What third ring of hell is this?? 12 days of headache, stuffed nose/ears, seared throat and lungs, unending coughing, fever, no sleep and now nausea. Somebody knock me out.” It would go on for another week or so. I did get better. I didn’t think it was COVID — that was happening far away in Asia. …

If a fundraising professional falls in a forest… I mean sends a grant proposal from the work-from-home office, did it really happen?

In this dream, I’m at a conference with my teammates. Something I used to do with some frequency. It’s pre or post COVID so not the recurring dream where I’m out and no one is masked and I can’t deal. Just a normal conference. I’m there with my team — ten people I really enjoy traveling with and who I miss. …

Another screen instead of a friend
Another day separate but on zoom
A work day marks the day different
Another short commute to the guestroom

Another risk assessment of the ordinary
Another socially distanced work around
Another tech platform crammed in my brain
Another unsatisfying solution found

Another afternoon like all the others
Another tough task completed alone
Teamwork without the Oxycontin
Colleagues lost who loath the phone

Another night of PBS news hour
Another meal cooked by hand
The dishwasher running endlessly
Another crisis badly handled by man

Another shame-storm for unfinished projects
Another weekend to write that novel
Continued fruitlessness…

I was born in a town of 300 people in a blue state. For twenty years, I have lived in a metro area with almost 3 million people in a blue state. I don’t recognize rural America anymore.

So many of my favorite people have gotten off Facebook saying it’s too hard, it’s full of nasty politics, comment trolls, or Russian bots trying to exert an emotional response. The fun is gone from Facebook. It’s not fun because it’s not personal. People repost, sharing other content — articles, videos, memes. That share button is addictive cuz the darn cat videos are so frickin’ cute. Or the otter I posted rubbing his eyes? Adorable. My point is I do this too. If we want connection, we need to SHARE ourselves.

Some overshare, and this might be an overshare too…

Conservative pundits and alt right radio:

The radical left is TAKING OVER THE COUNTRY.

Progressives have a problem with how America was founded.

The “American Left wants to totally transform America.

We are witnessing a “left-wing cultural revolution.”

Are liberals trying to “overthrow” the government?

Fox news is telling us liberals are winning. Sounds great to me. Listening to progressives, I might think we aren’t making any progress at all. So I was thinking this is a good way to cheer myself up, maybe I need to turn to the other channels.

Conservative perceive themselves the victims of the left’s…

All eclipsed out.

In August of 2017, I drove with four friends from Denver to Wyoming to witness the rare event of a solar eclipse. Always the planner and amidst a ton of hype, I was nervous to not have reserved a hotel or camping spot ahead of time. This once in a lifetime event would prompt millions of people to walk outside (or for some, travel incredible distances) to stare up at the sun for 2 minutes.

I concerned about getting there in time; not interested in sitting in traffic for half a day if we didn’t get to…

[I wrote this story and published it on Medium in 2017. Later, I found this header on the story: “Only you can see this message. This story’s distribution setting is off.” I cannot update the setting so I had to republish.]

I’m 17 years old. I’m on a bus in the middle of the night with 100 foreign exchange students. We are traveling back to central Illinois from two amazing weeks in Washington D.C. and New York City. I’m about to have a profound experience I will never forget.

The memory is of Gregory. And a certain song that brings…

To be a nonprofit fundraising professional who has worked at multiple organizations is to become intimately aware of the problems of the world. You absorb them into your being. They change you. It’s impossible to live on as you did before.

In my time at a bicycle advocacy organization, I learned first-hand the challenges of being an urban bicycle commuter with no bike lanes or safe bike routes, the understanding that mountain bikers have about the outdoors and the preservation of their play spaces, the road biker’s need for wide shoulders and sympathetic drivers as well as the anxiety parents…

[I wrote this story and published it on Medium in 2017. Later, I found this header on the story: “Only you can see this message. This story’s distribution setting is off.” I cannot update the setting so I had to republish.]

In February of 2011, I spent three weeks in South America, starting in Buenos Aires, traveling to Asuncion, Paraguay to build homes with Habitat for Humanity and finally a week in Uruguay to vacation with my foreign exchange student sister. …

Kimberly Urish

Always an English major, I write short non-fiction about my experiences. Talk to me.

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