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Minding business…

August 6, 2010

Just then the mother bird came back to the tree…

“Do you know who I am?” she said to her baby…

“Yes, I know who you are,” said the baby bird…

“You are not a kitten…

You are not a hen…

You are not a dog…

You are not a cow…

You are not a boat,

or a plane,

or a Snort!!!

You are a bird,

and you are my mother…”

— in Are You My Mother? by P. D. Eastman

My children love to hear me tell stories…

I used to feel like I had to make up fairy tales and make-believe,

but now I know that what they love most is to hear how I see things…

I’m always sure to tell them,

this is my view of the world,

you need to make your own sense of stories,

and how things are for you…

They never say,

How come you only remember the bad things,

and twist everything around???!!!

Starshine often looks at me and says,

I know that there’s a reason why you’re telling me about this,

even if I don’t know why right now…

I love to hear them reading the first book I ever read all by myself,

to each other,

with the same vocal expression I used when I read this favorite book aloud to them…

Little Gem says to Starshine,

Read it like Mama…

And when Little Gem reads in her head,

I know she’s reading with the same voice,

when she looks over her shoulder to wink,

and blow me kiss…

A few nights ago Starshine called from Montreal…

She said,

Mama, don’t tell Papa this or he’ll huff and puff,

because we went to Swartz’s for smoked meat on Sunday,

and their sandwiches aren’t nearly as good was the ones we make,

at home…

They don’t use cheese,

or sweet onions,

or a the right kind of bread…

And our sandwich press makes everything melt altogether,

with a crispy crust on the outside…

We really should open a cafe…

Sometimes I know why I’ve written things down,

and other times I have no idea until I find a scrap under the couch when I’m vacuuming,

and I feel a click that says,

NOW…

and then I often still don’t know what the note is driving at…

Today I found this floating around the piles of things all over the kitchen,

written down by my doctor of traditional chinese medicine while I was on a table stuck with pins to relieve not the symptoms,

but a felt sense…

I knew it would come in handy at some point in time…

tenesmus:

the unfinished feeling after defecation,

or in extreme cases an ineffectual,

and painful straining,

at passing stool…

There’s a welcome breeze in the air this morning,

a feeling of movement in the air,

that contrasts the hazy stagnation of yesterday,

telling us that something is afoot…

When you’ve been in a small school for as long as I was as a teacher,

and you’re smart,

you start to pay attention to the patterns and rhythms of the whole school body…

There are times when you can push,

and there are other times when push as you might,

nothing moves…

Then there’s the corresponding cycle of the moon…

We talk in small circles about the full moon,

and welfare Wednesday,

but not much credence is given to the power of the new moon…

In a school building full of women,

there is ample opportunity to watch the cycles of the moon…

The waxing,

the waning,

and the in-between…

On my side of the school,

and in the staffroom,

we talked casually about the effect of our cycles,

on each other…

We joked about who was alpha in the pack,

as one cycle shifted closer to another…

In my house of origin,

my mother didn’t have to ask when my sister and I started to take birth control pills…

She knew by who was out of alignment,

based on bathroom evidence…

And as for stool,

it tells fabulous stories about the eliminating organism,

if we know how to read it…

With pet rabbits,

a dog,

and babies,

there was a time when my whole world revolved around the tao of pooh…

I remember saying to the father of my children,

I’m no longer interested in how your day was,

just tell me who had a movement,

how much,

and what it looked like…

as if my middle name were Paracelsus…

Last night I had a dream where I was yelling at my mother about being two-faced…

I saw the calm mask,

but felt what was underneath the words you know that I love you,

so far from the truth…

This is something one needs to watch for with those who use meditation to bypass the river of feeling…

And this is why we must keep an eye on the perceived cutting edge of practicing meditation in public school classrooms…

I’m not saying it shouldn’t be done…

I’m just saying we need to watch it with a critical eye,

and be clear about why we want to do it,

and how…

Finding another way to keep children compliant with theories,

methods,

and every student will,

will only lead to more problems down the road…

And when you sit still,

and open up,

you’re opening up to everything,

and it appears that the school system is already way in over its head in that department…

Children have noses on the backs of their hands,

and it is my professional belief,

based on my own observations,

that rather than sitting in meditation,

the school body would be better off working on projects of love,

individually,

or altogether…

Because really,

shouldn’t the focus of school,

in this day and age,

be about the gift of the collective,

and the possibility of joining up,

with someone,

who is as excited,

and curious about life,

and the things you want to learn,

as you are…

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