Brittany Lee Allen

A Thread of Gold Against the Inky Black

My little white candle flickered before my eyes as I joined my voice with the congregation. I watched the wax slowly glide down toward my fingers and sang,  “Silent night! Holy night!All is calm, all is bright’round yon virgin mother and child!Holy infant, so tender and mild,sleep in heavenly peace,sleep in heavenly peace.” My heart […]

Grief Oblivion

Grief floats through the air like smoke above us, entering our lungs—a breath thief. I look around to see hands wiping tears from eyes, looks of shock and helplessness. Death has shaken us again. My four-year-old sits under the smoke, unmoved, unaware. He flips through the pew Bible and smiles up at me, then at […]

The Boundary Lines of My Broken Body

This essay originally appeared on Calla Press Literary Journal. Somewhere between rage-cleaning the kitchen and a ten-minute tidy, I decide it’s time. I reach into the bin and grab the avocado rattle—the one my first son shook around as he giggled when he was 4 months old. I place it in the donation pile. A […]

Will My Husband Still Think I’m Attractive as I Age?

I was twenty and working at a Bloomingdale’s call center when someone handed me a complimentary pair of women’s shapewear. I didn’t know what Spanx were as I stretched them over my legs, later tossing them into a donation box. Postpartum with my second son, I regretted that decision as I spent $80 on a […]

Don’t Believe These Four Lies about Spiritual Abuse

This article was originally published on Core Christianity. The worship song lifted my soul as tears welled up like a dam, ready to be released. I bit my lip. Don’t cry. Don’t cry. Don’t cry. It’s been years since the day harsh words pierced my heart and I’m still scared to let anyone see my tears, especially […]

Lessons from My Garden

The leaves are starting to take a turn toward their fall colors here in Ohio, but I’m still gathering zinnias in my garden. The tree in my neighbor’s backyard is dropping its leaves into mine while I water my bell peppers and pick red tomatoes. I cut off a zucchini from its vine, take it […]