Thursday, September 27, 2007

children


I went to Owen's school today and while I was waiting outside his classroom I overheard a conversation going on in the kindergarten room. Glancing over, I saw a teacher sitting primly in a red plastic chair. Her tone severe, she lectured her young audience who attended to everything in the room except her voice. "Scissors are NOT used to cut crayons or playdo. They are ONLY for cutting paper. We cut paper to learn the skill of cutting. We study bears because they are interesting. Tommy, pay attention, Bears ARE interesting. Hands in your lap Susan. Eyes on me. Eyes on ME. Bears are interesting and you are learning important skills that will prepare you for the first grade. Excuse me, excuuuuse me. I am waiting. Kindergartners sit quietly and don't talk when I am talking." The lecture went on and on. I found myself imagining a flock of birds trapped in a cage, or monkeys carted off to an experimental lab, or something wild being stripped down and tamed. I wanted to run into the room, wildly, wielding crayons and scissors, nibbling on playdo and screaming "REVOLT". I wanted to yell, "FREE YOURSELVES". I wanted to call out, "Grab your paste and crayolas and join me". I wanted to instigate a revolution, overturning the social order. I didn't of course. I graduated from the school of "color in the lines, cut only paper, and never talk over a teacher", with honors. Besides, my son was already walking toward me with the self satisfied appearance of one recently liberated from study. On the drive home I began to wonder why we can't color outside the lines, or cut playdo with scissors, or sing in class. I am a teacher too. I know what it is like to manage a myriad of young bodies, whose every atom is screaming for movement. I put scissors out with the playdo, I don't have lines to color inside, I sing while I work (quietly, more like humming really) and yet I ache for the child in us all. The child, who like Bodhi, wants to discover and explore, to experiment and express. The child who is not yet tame.
"Unless ye become like little children, ye cannot enter the kingdom of heaven."
GRAB YOUR CRAYONS, EAT YOUR PLAYDO, GLUE YOUR FRIENDS, and LIVE LIFE LIKE YOUR ALIVE.

Monday, September 24, 2007

dropping knowledge QUESTION: Robert Thurman, New York

smiling



Bodhi seems to unconsciously understand the power of a full throttle smile. Living his life at a full tilt, he reminds me of the beauty and joy contained in each breath. What a gift.

Parade


Minding our own business we were interrupted by a cacophony of music, which seemed to be issuing from a marching band on the front porch. We rushed outside to see a parade passing by our front door. HOW RANDOM IS THAT. It was the Lakewood Tiger Homecoming Parade and it wound its way through our neighborhood.

Shane and Owen got all jazzed up, put on their orange and went out to the big game.

unbirthday

We celebrated Owen's unbirthday this weekend, complete with crown, unpresents (toothbruth, old ball, and a miniature velvet painting kit), potato bar and unbirthday cupcakes. We had a marvelous time.

Owen playing KING and Bodhi entertaining as the appointed jester.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


It has been a while since I wrote my last post. Truthfully, I began to feel it was a somewhat narcissistic endeavor, as I imagine only a relative few ever read these words. Still, I write, not because I anticipate an audience, but simply because writing is in my nature.
I have been suffering from a devastating case of sleep deprivation. Our Bodhi sunshine recently swore off prolonged periods of rest and has consequently relegated my beta waves to the distant past. I brought him to the doctor, fearing that he was suffering from a strange and dangerous virus that caused children to waken every thirty minutes. We spent a few restless minutes, closeted in an examining room lined with monkeys- stuffed, painted and photographed- preparing for the worst. The doctor offered an indulgent and slightly patronizing smile and said that Bodhi was most likely suffering from social dependent sleep disruption (or something to that effect). It sounded ominous but not lethal. She went on to tell me that some very social children become reliant on social interaction to the extent that their sleep is disrupted. Unfortunately this is more often true of children who co-sleep with their parents and generally worsens, rather than improves, unless measures are taken to encourage the nocturnal socialite to self-soothe and sleep independently. Feeling chagrined and carrying a grinning Bodhi on my hip, I returned home.
Bodhi has 'slept' in his crib for 4 nights now and I have begun a nightly regime of sleep walking to and from his room with uncomfortable frequency. He seems to be progressing incrementally and I look forward to REM's sometime within the decade. As for work, it is wonderful. I love my job, my co-workers and my students. Shane is a marvelous support through it all. He tries to get out of bed and help with Owen each night. His response to sleep deprivation is to sleep so deeply that he is impermeable to waking. As for me, I am exhausted, but happy and that is worth every sleepless night.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

nice

I used to be 'Nice'. You know, the kind of 'nice' that talks with a quiet voice and smiles sweetly, ignoring rude comments with apparent grace and lying down at each threshold to provide a doormat for the next person to enter over. A 'nice' that usually results in leaking anger, rather than expressing it, thereby toxifying the undercurrent and polluting the body. Yeah, that kind of nice. Now, it seems that I am becoming more genuine. Don't get me wrong, I am often smiling and ignoring things that don't matter, but if I get ruffled now, I growl.
Today, I was confronted by a very rude, middle aged woman, intent on berating someone and I was the nearest person to her in the store. She made an obnoxious comment, that the 'nice' Angelina would have responded to with a smile and a swift apology for existing(swallowing the immediate impulse of retaliation, by imagining any number of possible situations in the woman's life which might have provoked her attitude. Who knows maybe her cat, Fluffy, died this morning, or her husband might be having an affair, etc., ad infinitum). Instead, I turned to her and said, "You know, I imagine that you are capable of being friendly to an outright stranger, but have intentionally decided to be rude. Why don't you decide to do it somewhere else". Well that is what I wanted to say, what I actually said was, "Geez, that wasn't very friendly of you, was it" and I walked away. It wasn't mean, (actually it was a little passive aggressive maybe), but it wasn't 'nice' either. It's a start. Maybe I will feel better physically,when I cease swallowing my feelings in my pursuit of appearing nice to people I don't know and I'll probably have the emotional energy to be truly kind to the people I do (including myself).

Saturday, September 1, 2007

The Little Mermaid and Insight


Last night Owen, Mojo and I, went to see the upcoming Broadway musical, The Little Mermaid, at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House in Denver.
It was MAGNIFICENT. More than that, it was wonderful beyond words. The little girl in my heart, couldn't stop smiling and glowing. I recommend it to anyone who has the opportunity to see it.
On our way home, Owen and I got into a deep philosophical conversation. One thing led to another and I said that my deepest wish was to fully realize the truth that I am not a body, but an expression of all there is and realize it so much that all there is begins consciously breathing me (well that and getting to be a Mermaid). Owen said, "But Mom you can do that already". I laughed, assuming he was joking and he said, "No mom really. You just have to close your eyes and say I AM those things and think about them without thinking of anything else and for that moment you are what you are wishing for". Surprised, I smiled, "Yep, you're right son!" Then he said, "I think there is only one God and it breaks into millions and millions of pieces and a piece of God is in everything, rocks, trees, people, animals...even cars. You can talk to the God by opening your heart and a stream of spiritual light forms a connection between two hearts. You break that connection when you get angry at them." He went on for quite a while. None of these concepts are new. I am sure he has heard me tout similar philosophies at one point or another, but the fact remains that he digests, assimilates and reformulates them, each time coming up with something different and his own. Pretty cool.