Josh’s new book is out now. It’s an exploration of choice and personhood through the lens of how we build our lives, moment by moment.
Signed, personal copies are still available- just follow the link below.
I read this book almost every week when I carried Gavin. When I gave birth to him small pieces of it were so apart of my spirit, they came to life inside of me. When I was going up the elevator to labor and delivery I could hear this little piece of the book, “Don’t think of it as pain. Think of it as an interesting sensation that requires all of your attention.” This became a mantra for me. I was far removed from the aesthetics and sounds of the hospital until Gavin was born, I myself barely made any noise at all. I was so immersed in every feeling and sensation my body had, my attention had absolutely nothing else to absorb. The feelings were intense but they were phenomenal. Truly omnipotent, they were incredibly perfect- every single one. When Gavin was born I was bursting with energy for days. I think if I would have paid my attention to anything else I would have been absolutely exhausted by the hospital and all of it’s extremities.
People ask me about my birth plan now, and I don’t have one. The only plan I have is to pay every single particle of my attention to the inside of my body, mind, and spirit until everything else just is. Nothing else is more important to me, my space is already laid and it’s on the inside.
Sometimes all I need is a picture to get my creative cosmos moving. If you’re looking for something to build your rocket with, please don’t stop here! But while you’re here, mosey on through.
Pipe Cleaner and Wiffle ball: strengthening pincer grasp, hand eye coordination, problem solving and imaginative play. What? Don’t you see the octopus in this picture?
Alphabet search in water beads: I love water beads- a relaxing, soothing physical experience that is cherished by children and adults. The letter cubes came from the game Bananagrams and I made the matching alphabet chart. This is a fun one person activity and can also be used during class gatherings. Strengthening our pincer grasp for writing, our focus and mental strength for living, and our wonder for engaging.
Baking soda, vinegar and food coloring: Art that makes sound and science. Explore color mixing, scientific reaction and the beautiful buzzzz and fizz that comes with every drop; all while strengthening those writing muscles, coordination and wonder for both the arts and sciences.
Color sorting tubes and open-ended art: a special place for raw and creative art using an array of open ended supplies. Color sorting tubes that require balancing and the soft controlled drop of each pompom ball.
I found this, written by an old friend, Bowd Beal.
“I heard a story a long time ago that really resonated with me. I tried to remember it as best I could, but the point of the story was to help someone understand that a struggle can produce strength and resiliency. Now, there’s an entirely different conversation to be had if the individual struggling doesn’t embrace the struggle, but that’s for another time. This particular post is so that I can propose a challenge for all the parents out there, and the challenge is this:
Let your child struggle. Let them fail. Let them feel the full measure of their failures, their shortcomings, their inadequacies, and their disappointments. Let them experience the feeling of letting someone down. Let them know what it feels like to disappoint someone who counted on them. Then, let them learn. Guide them through the process. Let them know that it’s not ok, but that they can, and will be better if they choose to be. I know that this is much, much easier said than done, and I know it’s even easier for the guy with no kids to be the one to say it. I can’t fathom what it is like to have a child in this world that we live in. Judgement and scrutiny are everywhere we look. It’s at its most concentrated & poisonous levels on the things we look at most – the thing you’re looking at right now in your hand. There aren’t many things that I have figured out, but I can tell you with certainty that if I do anything well, it’s because I did it poorly first. I’ve messed up a lot. Things that I’m so embarrassed of, they make me cringe when their memory creeps in to my head. However, from those shortfalls I learned to pick myself up, frequently with tremendous support from people who chose to believe in me (we can discuss later how foolish they were/are for doing so). I can only hope that if God blesses me with children, I can find the strength (and courage) to let them struggle, and that I can somehow lead them to grow from those struggles. Anyway, if you were curious (and not sick of reading) here’s the story:”
He is now an acclaimed Coach with immense success in communities nation wide.
When I read his invitation my heart swelled. I believe in this with a fierce conviction.
When I had my son I didn’t really know what the hell I was doing outside of good ole’ instinct. The only thing I did know was that it was ok for him to fail just as much is it was going to be ok for him to succeed. And if my motherhood is built on anything it is that foundation- it is ok to fail. When I don’t know what to do, I know that. Not only do I know it for my son, I know it for myself. I celebrate my failures equally with my successes and use them toward a deeper experience and understanding of who I really am. I think my family taught me this, cumulatively. My mother, my father, grandparents.. I can’t remember anything direct, it was more a way of living that taught me. I can identify one way of living that was covertly impactful- my goodness was never centered around my success. It was never linked to my grades, my success in school, my advocacy, ideas, abilities. I can’t remember my family ever boasting anything in these areas. Once I remember winning a pretty big poetry contest, and I remember my grandmother asking me how I felt about it, listening and sharing how she felt. I remember my mother listening to my excitement intently, I remember my great grandfather asking what I wanted to do next. No one ever said or implied, “Our daughter/granddaughter is so smart and creative! She won a poetry contest! We are so proud!” These responses taught me I was valued more than my successes or failures.
My son had a terrible 3rd grade year. Between academics, friends, a clash with the teacher, and a new school it was undeniably crappy. While I had to do the dance of supporting him, listening to him, being his biggest cheerleader and his safest space, I also had to let him fail- in some cases miserably.
At one point I walked into his room and on his desk was a little piece of paper he had written on very delicately. It said “Was today a bad day? That’s ok! Tomorrow can be good!”
Is this about failure or success? I can’t say absolutely what it is about, but for me it is about thriving and loving one’s self despite set backs, bad days, or failures. It’s about enjoying great days but not using them as a definition for one’s SELF. For me it was about knowing Peace. Looking at a bigger picture and knowing our true value, the Self.
Happy birthday dear one.
I hope that we continue to learn from you and live sincerely, kindly, authentically and fiercely.
“Words are things, I am convinced
You must be careful, careful about the words you use
Or the words you allow to be used in your house
In the Old Testament we are told in Genesis
That in the beginning was the Word
And the Word was God and the Word was with God
That’s in Genesis
Words are things
You must be careful
Careful about calling people out of their names
Using racial pejoratives and sexual pejoratives
And all that ignorance
Don’t do that
Someday we’ll be able to measure the power of words
I think they are things
I think they get on the walls, they get in your wallpaper, they get in your rugs
In your upholstery, in your clothes and finally…
Today Gavin and I went to watch some court cases in Jefferson County. Gavin is interested in law, particularly immigration and international, so we wanted to do some exploring, starting with district attorneys and county attorneys. Not as prestigious as his hopes of working in Canada, but you gotta start some place 😉🧐
I’m getting this question a lot. Gender reveal party? Will you find out the gender? Can we do a party? Do you want to know the sex? While generally speaking I have a very clear position on this, I am also quite understanding that others may not share that view. Well given the joy and wonder of hormones……. my position, my feelings and my emotion on “gender reveal” parties are amplified- immensely. 14 years ago this idea was first presented to me while carrying my son, and when I heard about it, and a friend offered to do it, I remember my exact words- Jesus! No!
No I will not have a gender reveal party.
The thought of a pink and blue cake makes me throw up in my mouth (hormones are speaking up) and makes my entire body quiver with anticipation for change, humanity and humility. As for finding out…. We aren’t sure. Initially I was very much wanting to wait, but now….. as the days move with an unbearable slowness toward October… I am eager (almost manic) to find out anything I can about this little life I’m spending every moment with. So…. as I enter the second trimester… all I have to say is.. we shall see!
Am I anti lace? Am I pro neutral? Against pink and blue?
What is it?
It’s a person.