Story and photos by Brigid Morrissey


Melinda Lusk

Sometimes it’s hard to open up to a friend or family member, let alone a complete stranger. The women who braved the gusty winds on a cold April day along the Big Four Bridge could’ve chosen to be as cold as it was outside. Instead, I was welcomed into their stories. I listened as they shared tales of hurt, triumph, and beautiful chaos. The congruent posture of these women was a refined contentment, at peace with their circumstances and inspiring others to feel the same. I left feeling much warmer — on the inside at least.



“The death of my husband was a big change. I haven’t lived alone in a long time. It was very frightening at first.”

“Physically, I was on overdrive to keep my mind off the challenges ahead of me. I got real sick. But it felt like I was on this treadmill running from whatever I’m supposed to be running from at my age.”

“Spiritually I’ve made changes in my life. It’s made me think twice. Since I left home, I was very disillusioned with churches. I had a challenging past with my family involving religion. It’s left me vulnerable. I want there to be a god.”

— Melinda Lusk

Caitlin Yokley

“Physically I lost a lot of weight for my wedding. I lost 60 pounds.“

“My ACL is torn right now. I was skiing in Keystone, Colorado. Right now I’m just trying to stay active.”

“My mom passed away in October. She was diagnosed with cancer for the third time. I’m a nurse so I knew it wouldn’t be a good outcome. It was really hard for me. I think seeing the love my mom and dad had for each other was so beautiful. She taught my dad how to do the laundry, iron his clothes, and her other duties. It was a blessing from God to give her time to teach him those things. My husband and I were able to learn from that, and our marriage has changed because of it. We’ve learned to let the small things go and realized how short life is. And you get great family support, too. Surround yourself with good people who are there for you in the bad times — those are the people to keep around you. You can’t go on if you’re by yourself.”

— Caitlin Yokley

Debbie Walker

“I recently lost my job of 18 years so I’m using the time to ask God what to do next. I have time to meditate in the mornings, I have time to volunteer at Hildegard House, and I have time to walk four miles on the walking bridge. It’s turned out to be a nice blessing.”

— Debbie Walker

from Blogger http://www.todayswomannow.com/2018/05/in-neighborhood-changes-these-women-are_28.html