I teach, I learn.

January 24, 2018

 

I teach, I learn.

 

My first born turned 6 years old today.
I dedicate this post to him,
Focusing on both what I am teaching,
and what I am learning.

 

I teach kindness, and self-regulation.
I learn vulnerability and excitement.

 

I teach discipline and self-care.
I learn playfulness and spontaneity.

 

I teach reading and writing.
I learn joy and confidence.

 

I teach math and problem solving.
I learn patience and curiosity.

 

Above it all,

I am reminded day in and day out,

Of the importance of listening.
And of the importance of asking questions.

 

About remaining curious about the human experience.
Of remaining open to life’s experiences.

 

Of being OK with surprises.
Of being OK with growing.

 

And most of all, of love.
The love of a 6 year old is bursting.
I am so grateful for you, Everett Gray.

 

I gaze, I wonder.

Monday January 15, 2018

I gaze, I wonder.

As a little part of my soul

Cries, another part

Celebrates.

Celebrates a time that once

Was, and now has past.

Will I go on living my life

Present, past, and future

Or will I learn to live more fully

In the now

To become more alive

More awakened to the wonder

That is this moment now,

Not the wonder that once was

In that moment, time and

Place now past

Not to be lived again.

Really the beauty of the now

May indeed lie in the fact that

It is fleeting

So to use this breath

To its full potential

Is to notice the quality of the breath

As it envelopes the body

The mind at ease

Now in a place of awareness

The sun warms my skin

The music reaches to my core

My body sways and flows

To my own rhythm

Informed by great teachers

Now all in the past

Yet I carry them with me

Searching for purpose

Perhaps it is in front of me all along

To teach

To love

To breathe

To be

Taken all together

To teach love, breath, and presence.

To be presence, teaching love with breath

Teaching others to love this breathe

To live life purposefully, dedicated to the now.

Full of potential.

Gaze, and wonder.

Why does it feel so crazy?

Why does it feel so crazy?

Dec. 6, 2017

 

Whirling.
Spinning.
Out of control.
Breathe.
Stay grounded.
Not one more.

 

Take a break.
Take a breath.
Don’t forget to
breathe.

 

Notice the racing mind.
The endless list.
The deadlines.
The exams.
The priorities.

 

Watch, listen.
All around.
Buzzing, buzzing.
What’s that sound?

 

Movement.
Storming.
Hurried bodies.
Scowling faces.
Why do we subject
Ourselves to such
Stress

 

Where does the solution lie?
Inside.

 

Listen again.
Listen again.
What do you need?
Food? Water? Stretching? Sleep?

 

Follow the calls.
Listen now.
If not before.
Listen now.
Remember the impermanence of it all.

Form this we will learn.
From this we will grow.
Likely in unexpected ways.

 

Soon enough.
It will be done.
Soon enough you’ll see.
The end is near,
yet it will come again.

 

Maybe next time you will be better.
Prepared for stress.
Prepared for chaos.
And amidst it all.
Still be able to rise above.

 

To watch instead of fall.

 

Lost and found.

Hidden while shown.

Aimless with purpose.

Calm while anxious.

Cerebral and intense.

In an unfamiliar land, I don’t hear my home tongue.
The sights and sounds overwhelm my senses.
Contributing to a simultaneous state of confusion.
Alertness.

–stop– wandering– where did I go?

Confusion endurance.
A goal.

Mixed media.
Art performance.
Teach.
Math identity.

Winter.
Solace.
Home.

I am home yet away.
The sights, sounds, smells,
Ambiance all seem foreign.

Again.
Here I am.
Seeking to feel at home.

To grow.
And to flourish.
She believed it to be possible.

Yet the scale leans toward an inevitable tipping point.

The idea of finding balance remains theoretical.
Head pounding. Body aching. Let the light shine.
Brighter above all else.

I sit.
I wait.
I watch.
I listen.

I profess my inhibitions–core truths–of this trip around
The sun,
a burning globe of light
I carry at my core–seen deep within my soul
If only you gaze into the reflected
Light of my eyes.

Now awakened.
Yet asleep.
Yearning for something.

More.

Less.

Different.

Now.
Be the change you wish to see in the world.
But how–
When chained to expectations that don’t feel like my own.

Write what you want to read.

Now. I write.
Wanting to get this out.
Into the world.
With higher purpose and
intention in mind.

Nov. 13, 2017.

Listen, listen.

Nov. 5, 2017

 

Listen, listen.
Listen to your body.
Listen to your heart.
Listen to your breath.
Listen to your inner voice.

 

What do you notice in this space and time?
What movement are you craving?
Undulate your spine to come into being.
With feet planted on the earth.
In this moment in space and time.
No other.

 

As of late I’ve been acting out of “shoulds” more than “wants”
With some invisible net of expectations that traps me from coming into my full potential
This confusion inhibits my ability to be clear
While this may sound obvious (confusion&lackofclarity)
It is through purposeful reflection
That I come to know the
Root of my discontent.

 

Soliciting advise
I keep telling myself the answer is out there
Someone, somewhere, over the rainbow
Must know the story to be told,
The right way, the way to balance,

But wait—

If balance means being fulfilled
In body, mind, and spirit
Then I am the one, the only one, who can create that balance

 

Feeling fulfilled in my life means
acting out of passion
Rather than
Acting out of obligation
For acts inspired by passion are fueled by an infinite source of energy

 

Seeking solace in others’ advise can bring to bear
wisdom not yet learned
However, perhaps more powerful than others’ wisdom is
Realizing that

I am the creator of my own experience
Which in turn means the “answer” is inside of me
And has been all along.

 

I am the one, the only one, who knows myself the best
I am the one who has the ability to be deeply aware of my bodily sensations
Of the nature of my breath (long or short, deep or shallow, full bodied or chest-centered)
Of the nature of my movement (or immobility as I sit and stare for hours on end at one or 2 or more rectangular devices with bright screens that illuminate and fix my gaze)

Of the passions that keep me up at night
Of the projects I wake up thinking about first thing in the morning

 

In this state of self-reflection I am reminded of a poem by Shel Silverstein

Listen to the MUSTN’TS, child,
Listen to the DON’TS
Listen to the SHOULDN’TS
The IMPOSSIBLES, the WONT’S
Listen to the NEVER HAVES
Then listen close to me-
Anything can happen, child,
ANYTHING can be

 

Notice.

Notice.

 

Where are you right now?
In physical space.
In mental space.
In state of being.
Check in.

 

What is the quality of the air?
Breathing in through your nostrils.
Do you notice the tickle on the top of your lip?
How the air is slightly warmer as you exhale.

 

How is the light?
Can you gauge the dimness or brightness of the room,
with your eyes closed.
What about when you cover your eyes.
How does this affect your state of being.
Coming into darkness.

 

Rest awareness on your third eye center.
That point on your forehead just above and between your brows.
Coming into stillness.
Alive.
Awake.

 

What stimulates your auditory sensations?
Whatever noises surround you, notice them.
The humming of a fan,
electricity powered appliances,
gas-powered vehicles.
What powers you?

 

Hear the sound of your breath as it
slowly enters and exits the body.
Let this breath fill up your belly,
allowing your abdomen to expand.

 

As you exhale, let it all go.
Feel the weight of your body give itself to the earth.
Notice what tensions you might feel in your body.
Release the tension with your breath.

 

I invite you in.
Even if just for a moment—this moment.
To be guided in movement
by your breath.

 

Where does this breath take you?
Stretch the tension in your neck
as you roll your head from side to side.
Stretch your arms to the sky to
expand your heart space.
Arch and curve your back to
feel the undulation of your spine.

 

As you breathe and move.
Really feel connected,
fueled by the power of this breathe.
In, and out.
Like waves of an ocean.
Connecting us all.

 

Remember,
you carry this power with you.
Refueling at any time,
is possible to release tension, and
to connect to energy through breath.

 

Stillness and movement.
Light and dark.
In and out.
In a never-ending
cycle of ebbs and flows.

 

Just notice.
It’s happening
right now.
Notice.

Facing fears.

Facing fears.

September 26, 2017

 

As a writer, one of my biggest fears is rejection.
It is human nature to hold in our hearts a longing for acceptance.
This inner drive to be seen and heard is in some ways at odds with the nature of publishing.

 

Here, in my free space to write I can enjoy the leisure of posting,
Publishing progress in press as I please, without a peer reviewing
My work to condemn me for the mistakes I’ve made
The lack of clarity and rigor, the seemingly lack of evidence to
Confirm the claimed results and implications.

 

Ha.
This is, and is not, at the same time, a laughing matter.
A wise person one told me,

To take your work seriously is one thing, to take yourself seriously is another.

For me, I choose to take my work seriously, remaining light hearted about myself.

 

Today it’s taken me all morning to face this fear of rejection.
Finally, now at the keyboard.
Starting with my most difficult project first.
I lean in to face the fear.

 

As the line goes, “it’s not personal, it’s business.”
The business of publishing involves peer-review.
Peer review may lend itself to an unfavorable decision (for you).
Perhaps to protect the integrity of the enterprise.
A journal cannot maintain an inverse relation of acceptance rate to prestige
If much of what is submitted is ultimately accepted.
But here’s the trick.

 

If you persist.
If you dedicate your work toward this aim.
If you repeatedly face the fear of rejection.
There is a silver lining.

 

You learn in the process.
You become a better writer through critical feedback on your work.
You hone your craft of telling the story, bird by bird (cf. Anne Lamott).

 

As a word builder.
Construct sentences that flow into paragraphs.
Paragraphs that narrate a story.
A simple story. Told to an audience.
With a simple aim. To educate.

 

For experienced writers,
this process may look different.
For emerging scholars (like me),
this process is the same time and time again.

 

I am dedicated to advancing my many manuscripts that are in progress.
For these are threads of my research agenda that are ultimately connected to my passions as an educator.
To improve opportunities for learners and teachers and researchers of mathematics education.

 

 

#keepitsimple #progressinpress #justkeepswimming #write

Letting go to grow.

Letting go to grow.

September 21, 2017

 

I pause in my stream of writing to gaze out the window.
The shimmying tree caught my eye,
And now I am the watcher of my experience.
Being in balance with doing.

 

A single leaf let go from its tether to the branch.
Now at rest in the shadow.
Ready to compost, returning to the earth.
To fertilize new growth in a new season.

 

The ever changing omnipresent ecosystem of the earth
Lives inside me, lives inside you.
The macrocosm in the microcosm.

 

Gaze upon the colorful show of foliage.
The letting go and returning to earth.
The wind and churning of energies and organic matter.
To prepare for rest and rejuvenation.

 

With time, with time.
We are reminded yet again.
To let go of that which no longer serves us.
To trust in the seasonal ebb and flow.
Of eventual growth and renewed light.

 

It is from the dirt,
From darkness,
A lotus flower blooms,
and is light.

 

I see you.

I see you.

In looking into the depths of my soul.
I see your sorrow, your fear, your pain.
I see your joy, your love, and excitement.
I see you.

Some see soul searching as selfish or single-focused.
I see the best and worst of me.
I see the best and worst of you.
I see the me I am meant to be.
I see you.

We turn from fear when embracing it makes us stronger.
We run from uncertainty when welcoming it makes us wiser.

We crave the lightness, joy, and curated “perfection.”
Yet it is from darkness that we come to know light.
It is from sadness that we come to a fuller sense of joy.
It is from messiness that true perfection can shine.

I see you.
Do you see me?

 

 

 

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