One of my all-time favorite John Mayer songs is a song called “Wheel.” It’s kind of about the way life is full of comings and goings, ups and downs, hellos and goodbyes. The repeating line is “that’s the way this wheel keeps working.”

I’ve kind of gone radio silent in talking about the whole storm that blew through my life. It’s not that I have nothing to say about it, it’s that I have ALL THE THINGS to say about it and I can’t really organize it in any logical collection of words, so I’m sparing all of you.

However. Let me just say this.

There was this kind of passive implication delivered to me that I needed to stay away from the coffee shop owned by the boy who was kind of careless. and for awhile I acknowledged it to a HUGE extreme… we’re talking I would go 25 minutes out of my way so I wouldn’t even drive by on the off chance he looked out the window and saw me at the light by his business. and there was this combination of Sarah Jane telling me LIFE IS TOO SHORT TO NOT GET THE DAMN MOCHA and Lorrie telling me that I was killing myself for small details he wouldn’t ever notice, and I said.. you know what, screw it. I want the freaking mocha.

So I’ve been going back.. not at all as frequently as I used to, but I only go on days when my end goal is my mocha. and I’ve had to see him a handful of times, which has been okay and really helpful for me, especially as I’ve felt more and more comfortable to go back to being myself. I’m going to be me.

Recently I got my normal delicious mocha and he made it, and I didn’t worry he had spit in it or something. I felt pretty good about it, actually… like… yeah, I’m going to be me and it feels good to be unapologetically me, and my life is going on alright.


I got to work.

My denomination is kind of weird. It’s really closely knit and everyone’s connected. The summer camp director at the camp I work at shares 463 mutual friends with me and I feel like that’s an abnormally high number. Anyway. It’s a small world within my denomination.

Back to this situation, at my work.

My pastor came in and decided to give me a heads up that my high school/first boyfriend’s parents would be coming to our church to assess our child safety protocol. Which largely falls within my job.

Good thing I had my mocha on me, right?



But here’s the thing.

I’ve survived it all, heart in tact. Not only am I still alive (that reminds me of a song), but I’m still vulnerable and hopeful and completely content with where I’m at. I can drink a mocha with an extra shot of bravery while hearing the mom of the person I learned to love with talk about her grandchildren, and I can do it with grace and gentleness and still sneak away to send my friends that picture because it is kind of funny.

and you know that Wheel song? That’s about hellos and goodbyes? The last words of the song are this:

I believe that my life’s gonna see
the love I give returned to me.

Wheel by John Mayer // stephanieorefice.netavailable as a downloadable print on my Etsy store
(use coupon code BRAVEMOCHA for 60% off this and all prints)


and with that…. I’ll drop the mic.