img_2174

this message will self-destruct in…

This month, I returned again to Sacred Heart for another retreat. I was struck by many things, but one of them was an innovative and insightful way to approach the Bible. Father Kinerk shared something along these lines (as interpreted by me): When you are in love with someone, you visit their home to meet their family. While there, you peruse photo albums from your significant other’s past. While perusing, your present conversation is filled with questions, comments, laughter, tears, responses, dialogue, and such. What is most important is not the photo album with its events and images, but the Read More

img_2174

snooze–turn off the alarm

According to the deconstructionist Jacques Derrida, there is a gap between the signifier and the signified; in other words, when we say something, it often fails to truly convey the essence of what we mean. In this inadequacy–the gap between the word and what lies beneath it–there is room to play. With that in mind, I’d like to return to playing with another metaphor to talk about education. On my dark and snowy drive to work early this morning, I listened to a story on NPR about “alarm fatigue.” The story explained the necessity of alarms in a hospital, as Read More

img_2174

with just a word

I spent a night in silent retreat at Sacred Heart in November to process the loss of my Mother. While meeting with my spiritual director for the weekend, I remember vividly her advice “to speak aloud my desires.” This resonated deep within me then, and still does, since I spend so much time in my own head. Often what it is there (besides cobwebs and “that’s what she said jokes”) are negative words built on fear, anxiety, and insecurity. Speaking aloud what I want, rather than dodging what I don’t, gives power to the positive promise rather than the annoying Read More

img_2174

the secret story-truths

Today was a day in the classroom which fed my soul. Thanks to an identity activity two colleagues facilitated in my classroom, I had the idea to have the students write and share the stories behind an aspect of their identity. For example, I am Caucasian American, but my sister’s in-laws are Mexican, and the church I grew up in was predominantly African-American. So I wrote the story behind my skin color–how it is more than white due to these formative experiences. I think I’ll share that later. After students wrote their stories on a self-selected aspect of identity, they Read More

img_2174

The Nation of Educalculation

I grew up playing school. My friends and I would sit in a room, draw on a chalkboard, take turns playing the teacher and students, and–get this–make, complete, and grade worksheets. (I feel like I should be admitting that at some sort of teacher anonymous meeting.) Fast forward about two decades–I quit college to attend cosmetology school. I worked in several salons for several years, loving the art and science of beauty. But soon I realized there was an emptiness…an emptiness which echoed of my childhood playing-school days. So I transitioned from behind the salon chair to the front desk Read More

img_2174

unresolutions

I know, I know. I’m going there. It’s that time of year when the majority of people resolve to do things differently, be kinder, lose weight, laugh more, stress less…yada yada. I use to be real into that as well. I’m pretty sure at one point I even had a journal, The New Year’s Journal (yes, it is entitled to propercase font), where I’d list my resolutions each year so that I could keep track of them. But the past couple of years have felt like an unwinding and an unlearning of that mentality. Not to mention how easy it Read More