A Peace of My Mind: How Life Changed

A Peace of My Mind: How Life Changed

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Stories of real people and how their lives changed as a result of COVID-19.


Michael Brown Sr. and Anthony Shahid
Jun 8 • 38 min
I spoke with Michael Brown Sr. and Anthony Shahid as they were in Minneapolis to support the movement of protests following the police killing of George Floyd. We talk about the 2014 killing of Michael’s son, Michael Brown, Jr. in Ferguson, Missouri,…
40 - Nate Houghton
Jun 6 • 26 min
Nate Houghton is an entrepreneur based in Boston, Massachusetts. We talk about his long-time diagnosis of depression and OCD and how he feels like his history with mental health issues has helped prepare him for some of the challenges of the pandemic…
39 - Bryn Baertlein
Jun 3 • 21 min
Bryn Baertlein is an elementary school teacher in Winona, Minnesota. She married Matt Baertlein on April 18, 2020. We talk about how they reduced their wedding from 350 guests to a party of 10, how her mother also stepped in as the piano player, and how…
38 - Andrew Waite
May 25 • 20 min
Andrew Waite is the 5th generation of his family to run the Waite & Son Funeral Home in Medina and Brunswick, Ohio. We talk about the ways the grieving process has changed during the pandemic, their efforts to families navigate the difficult…
37 - Kristin Schenck
May 21 • 16 min
Kristin Schenck is the co-owner of Log Jam, a bar and grill in Menomonie, Wisconsin. Last week when the state’s supreme court overturned the the extension of Governor Tony Evers’ stay at home orders, many bars threw their doors open to large crowds, but…
36 - David Smith
May 18 • 34 min
David Smith is an American living in Moldova, and is one of the founders of Smokehouse, an American BBQ restaurant in the capital city of Chișinău. We talk about starting a business without making any bribes in a landscape that expects them, the early…
35 - John Noltner
May 14 • 43 min
My longtime friend Wade Barry turns the tables and interviews me for How Life Changed. We talk about how COVID-19 has impacted my home and work life, the value of documenting stories of hope and our propensity for breaking into song during the long road…
34 - Christa Goodwin
May 11 • 26 min
Christa Goodwin is a middle school teacher and mother of two in Elberta, Alabama. Her husband Nate was diagnosed with cancer on June 4, 2019 and passed away at home April 9, 2020. We talk about how she and Nate met, how she has been supported by…
33 - Chica and Sunsets
May 9 • 30 min
Jen Beck Seymour and Greg Seymour are long distance hikers who go by their trail names, Chica and Sunsets. For the past year, they had been renovating a hostel in Franklin, North Carolina along the Appalachian Trail and had opened to hikers just five…
32 - Ryan Silverman
May 7 • 36 min
Ryan Silverman is a Broadway actor who was playing the role of Billy Flynn in the hit production of Chicago when the coronavirus closed down New York City’s theater district. We talk about how he learned of the closure, the quietness of the city these…
31 - Kari Rada
May 5 • 16 min
Kari Rada lives in Chetek, Wisconsin. We talk about her weekly trips to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota for chemotherapy treatments, her enormous collection of pig figurines and her love of riding motorcycles.
30 - Neal Hagberg
May 2 • 48 min
Neal Hagberg is a singer - songwriter in Minneapolis and also the director of Tennis and Life Camps for Gustavus Adolphus College. We talk about the process of deciding whether camps can be held this summer, the many lights he sees on in houses during…
29 - Joe Davis
Apr 29 • 28 min
Joe Davis is a nationally touring artist, educator and speaker based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. We talk about his faith, the creative ways he sees people coming together virtually to build community, and he also performs a new spoken word piece he wrote…
28 - Ambassador James Pettit
Apr 27 • 27 min
Ambassador James Pettit retired in 2018 from 38 years of service with the U. S. Department of State. We talk about the massive effort to repatriate American citizens back to this country during the COVID-19 pandemic, his tenure as ambassador to Moldova…
27 - Lars Pruitt
Apr 25 • 22 min
Lars Pruitt is the frontman for the Minneapolis-based band Yam Haus. We talk about the momentum the band was building, the upcoming tour they had to cancel and the creative space that opened up to write new songs. Oh yeah…and we talk about their Yam…
26 - Deborah Doering
Apr 23 • 27 min
Deborah Doering is an artist and educator in Harlem, New York. We talk about her bike ride through a seemingly empty Manhattan, the nightly 7 pm banging of pots to celebrate the frontline healthcare workers and her sense of when she might be ready to…
25 - Mike Arneson
Apr 21 • 26 min
Mike Arneson lives in Big Sky, Montana, but he is sheltering in place with his aging parents in La Crosse, Wisconsin while his wife Sue helps take care of their grandson Hank in Minneapolis to help their children who are both working from home. We talk…
24 - Danny O’Neel
Apr 19 • 44 min
Danny O’Neel is a U.S. Army veteran and a fellow at the Elizabeth Dole Foundation. He lives in Folsom, California. We talk about his work with veterans who suffer from PTSD and how social isolation is impacting some of them. We talk about his own…
23 - Jennifer Louden
Apr 17 • 23 min
Jennifer Louden is a best-selling author and a leading voice on self-care and creative transformation. Her new book, Why Bother? Discover the Desire for What’s Next will be released on April 21, 2020. To learn more and to buy her book, visit…
22 - Jon Pancost
Apr 16 • 38 min
Jon Pancost is a stone mason in Lucas, Kansas. We talk about the small number of COVID-19 cases in the rural areas of the state, the prevalence of conspiracy theories and the difficulty in crafting policy that is relevant to both our urban centers and…
21 - Jody Ross
Apr 14 • 27 min
Jody Ross was tested for COVID-19 in Minneapolis on March 18, 2020 and immediately started isolating. Her test came back positive on March 23. She has now been cleared to come out of quarantine by the Minnesota Department of Health and is doing well. We…
20 - Gavin Wagner
Apr 13 • 41 min
Gavin Wagner is an Honors College student from Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. We talk about his quick transition from learning on campus to distance learning from home, the lost opportunity to say a proper farewell to friends at school…
19 - Rose McGee
Apr 12 • 35 min
Rose McGee started Sweet Potato Comfort Pie after driving pies to Ferguson, Missouri, as a catalyst for caring and building community. We talked about the pies she is making now, the ways she is seeing people support one another and her hopes for us all…
18 - Arno Michaelis
Apr 11 • 38 min
Arno Michaelis is a professional speaker based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. We talk about the recent primary vote in his state, his history as a white supremacist, and his belief that love and compassion are going to save us all.You can learn more about…
17 - Kris Cain
Apr 10 • 34 min
Kris Cain is a psychotherapist in Frankfurt, Illinois. We talk about the rise of anxiety in this era of social distancing and uncertainty, our need to maintain human connections and her own discovery that she is less of an introvert than she once imagined.
16 - Ethan Bender
Apr 9 • 28 min
Ethan Bender is a bass player, husband and father in Milwaukee Wisconsin. We talk about his frustration at having to go out to vote in the state’s primary election this week, even as they were under a stay at home order, the disparities in COVID-19…
15 - Sandi Wesel
Apr 8 • 16 min
Sandi Wesel’s father has been hospitalized since early March. Although his health issues are not related to COVID-19, the virus has impacted Sandi’s ability to visit her father as well as do her own work as a physical therapist.
14 - Steve Wewerka
Apr 7 • 27 min
Steve Wewerka is a fine art photographer who was in the midst of his art fair season when the changing situation required him to shelter in place in his RV at a Florida panhandle campground. We talked about his cancelled shows, the community he is…
13 - Tracey Erickson
Apr 6 • 23 min
Tracey Erickson is a respiratory therapist in Fullerton, California. We talked about the community support she has seen for healthcare providers, the precautions she is taking to reduce the risk of exposure and the things she is looking forward to when…
12 - Zach Berget
Apr 6 • 30 min
Zach Berget is a lighting designer who recently relocated from Minneapolis to Los Angeles. We talked about the difficult timing of his move, what he misses from touring on the road with musicians, and the ways he is learning to appreciate a slower pace…
11 - Jason Kallsen
Apr 5 • 27 min
Jason Kallsen is the owner of Twin Cities Wine Education and The Wine Workshop in Minnesota. We talk about his rapid change from in-person to online wine education, the larger changes he sees in the hospitality business and how staying busy and focused…
10 - Steph Roble
Apr 4 • 21 min
Steph Roble is a member of the USA Olympic Sailing Team. We talk about qualifying for the team, weeks of uncertainty, learning the Tokyo games have been postponed for a year and what training looks like now. You can follow her journey…
9 - Joey Anderson
Apr 3 • 16 min
Joey Anderson is a high school senior from Burnsville, Minnesota.
8 - Tina Kunes
Apr 3 • 29 min
Tina Kunes is a high. school math teacher in Morgan Hill, California.
7 - Karolyn Hanson-Rathert
Apr 2 • 28 min
Karolyn Hanson-Rathert is an ICU nurse in Madison, Wisconsin.
6 - Kane Smego
Apr 1 • 49 min
Kane Smego is a spoken word poet, a hip hop artist and an educator based in Los Angeles, California. You can learn more about Kane’s work at https://www.kanesmego.com/.
5 - Emma Congelose
Mar 31 • 33 min
Emma Congelose is a nursing student in her senior year at Valparaiso University.
4 -Tabitha Turner
Mar 29 • 34 min
Tabitha Turner is the associate director of assisted living at a facility in Marshfield, Wisconsin.
3 - Hannah Gullixson
Mar 28 • 31 min
Hannah Gullixson is a musician who lives in Menomonie, Wisconsin. She is the founder of Every Little Thing Project that celebrates all bodies and addresses issues of eating disorders and social stigmas.
2 - Barry Yeoman
Mar 28 • 53 min
Barry Yeoman is a freelance journalist and writer based in Durham, North Carolina. His work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Nation, The American Prospect and Audubon Magazine, among others. You can learn more about Barry’s work…
1 - Cecie Suknaic
Mar 27 • 37 min
Cecie Suknaic is a student at the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago, Illinois.