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Tabi Upton

Stories by Tabi

I was sitting on the bed talking to the surgery nurse trying to hold back tears.

Most of us hate to wait. When we learned the adage "Good things come to those who wait" in grade school, we assumed the teachers meant waiting for recess, or snack time, or summer vacation.

This week I met my “Little” for the very first time. I’ve recently become a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters, an agency that matches adults with young people.

Wondering when you’ll save enough money to buy something you really want?

The misery caused by the January earthquake in Haiti invaded our eyes, our ears and our hearts. Millions around the world gave of their time and money to help.

My brother has my power drill. He’s had it all summer, and I want it back. I told him to bring it to me but, so far, nothing.

The school year has begun.

Vinny and Valerie Joy first met at a picnic for singles.

I had never been to South Georgia for vacation, so when my adventure-loving, freelancing friend invited me to accompany her on a press trip, I all but jumped at the chance.

Last Saturday I played my first, and possibly last, game of paintball. After a mid-morning rain shower, a group of young professionals entered the wet paintball course to play a match just as the sun began to burn in all its glory.

A long-time friend recently invited me to breakfast at her house. We ate on her deck, sitting at a table strewn with fresh rose petals and lit with a candle and decorated with fine dishes and a flower.

Being a “Lost” fan from its very first episode six years ago, I prioritized the watching of its finale this past Sunday, arranging my schedule around it, watching part of it at home and most of it at a neighbor’s house where we snacked and enjoyed light banter during the commercial breaks.

My friend Maggie invited me over to last weekend to look at her garden. It was beautiful. Situated in her front yard, it featured an array of interesting rocks, beautiful flowers and small but hopeful shrubs. We sat in the sun for a few minutes taking it all in.

Dating advice today is usually geared toward the young and never-married.

Parents simply amaze me. They give their lives to love, guide, finance and educate their children safely into adulthood.

My parents have just booked tickets to St. Thomas in the beautiful Caribbean.

My uncle, a lover of travel, history and culture once called me a "citizen of the world." I was taken aback, flattered by the phrase.

Lisa (not her real name) had been crying the day that we talked.

You don't have to be written about in a book to be a history maker. Most of us do it every day in small, steady ways. Ordinary citizens make history as they give of themselves to the communities around them.

I was wondering the other day, "Whatever happened to good, old-fashioned shame?" Not the kind that makes a person feel worthless or defective, but the sort of shame that regulates one's behavior.

He admits he's not your ordinary Haitian. Christian Craan, founder and bass player for the local reggae group Milele Roots since 1998, is a son of privilege -- to a degree.

It's really cold outside. I know I'm not the only one who is feeling a little pent up and boxed in. I long find some way to feel expansive in this hunker-down weather.

It's Christmas Eve, and whether you're with family today, alone, or not celebrating, I'd like to invite you to a unique gathering of friends, family, and strangers happening right here on this page. As I write and as you read, I'd like us to reflect on the hope, the joy, and the expectation that this day represents.

Just three days before Cathy Beach's 31st birthday, her mother died. The impact of that loss reverberated in her life for years. Holiday times with family seemed to lose their zing. "When my mom died, it was like I lost my core. A mother pulls the family together," she said.

The table is laden with delectable delights, its settings beautifying the room and adding to the festive glow.

Last Sunday I attended one of the best baby showers ever. This is amazing for me to say because I tend to be a cynical about the fuss people make over whether to buy pink or blue clothes (the baby doesn't care!), games that force me out of my seat and ladies discussing diaper issues.

Cherlyn always thought she had a pretty good childhood. Surrounded by family and close friends in Denver, she discovered early that she was adopted.

I wish I had a quarter for every time I've heard a parent say fretfully, "I just want my children to be happy."

One of my co-workers, who is known for his light-hearted humor and graced with an engaging smile, opened his arms wide to hug me one morning. Receiving it with laughter, I felt warmed, made ready for work and startled all at once.

I'm eating a FiberOne bar as I write this column. The information on the package promises to provide 35 percent of the fiber I need each day. Is it healthy? I have no idea.

"We choose our joys and sorrows long before we experience them."

Sitting in on the opening day ceremony at the Girls' Leadership Academy in the Westside recently, I felt inspired, proud and excited. There was a sense of destiny and purpose in the air at the opening of the charter school. We all listened as powerful women told their personal stories -- some already successful, others just beginning the journey -- all amazing.

Racial profiling has gotten much media attention in recent weeks. It began with the arrest of Harvard professor Dr. Henry Louis “Skip” Gates Jr. That led to controversial remarks made by President Barack Obama, which provoked a passionate response of the Cambridge Police Department and finally resulted in a friendly drink on the White House lawn with all parties involved.

At 21, Leah (not her real name) was married, pregnant and happy. So far, things had gone textbook perfect.

You are suddenly unemployed. Terminated. Let go. How do you begin moving on?

Father's Day has come and gone, but I still can't stop thinking about dads. My father enjoyed engaging us children. I still remember jumping in the car with him after basketball practice one day in middle school, asking him to drop off a friend.

As the school year draws to an end, students aren’t the only ones yearning for a vacation. Many teachers can’t wait for the much-needed break from the halls of learning.

A 16-year old struggles to break off a physically abusive relationship. A father faces the fact that his son’s bipolar rages have become so intense that he will need to hospitalize him for a time. A mother realizes that due to lack of money, her only daughter will need to be placed in custody to receive the treatment she needs.

When the young, the beautiful and the famous show the world that they are just as vulnerable as the rest of us, we sit up and take notice. Two young pop stars had a horrible fight one night, and the results were aired internationally.

I love the new year. It’s a chance to begin again, leave old things behind, look forward to something fresh and new.

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