At The Spark Initiative, we loved the movie Soul. In addition to the beautiful visuals, storyline, and music, so many concepts deeply resonated with us because of our own work with children and youth. Here are a few of our highlights.
We believe in and Speak to the Potential, Ability, and Resilience in every Kid (SPARK). In order to genuinely speak to these inherent qualities of every human being, you have to know they exist. You have to understand that there is no such thing as a broken child who needs fixing, or a “hopeless” case who is bound for the juvenile justice system. There are only children who have discovered their SPARK and those who haven’t. Those who have forgotten about it, and those who have remembered.
The texts came in slowly. “I tried to help him.” “I talked to him every day.” “I tried to try to save him.” My heart sank and my mind flooded. The irony is not lost on me. She just lost her brother, first to drugs, now to suicide. He was so young. His childhood barely...
As 2018 came to a close I began to notice something almost unrecognizable about my own existence. Though dripping with children, 20lbs heavier, and so exhausted I could barely make it through Christmas dinner, I was met with a sense of peace, contentment, lightness and aliveness that had eluded me most of the year prior.
When I became aware of myself, I was in awe. It was late December. Ladies, I repeat, late DECEMBER! In the history of my existence as an adult, I have never ended December with any feeling other than what I envision an out-of-shape, unsuspecting, first-time marathon runner feels after stumbling into the finish line on pure adrenaline and determination – elated it’s over, shocked she survived and swearing next time she will start preparing earlier.
Mornings are not where I will be winning any parental or leadership awards – ever. This morning I was feeling tired and grouchy… and feeling bad about my tired and grouchy-ness because I just got home from a trip to London and my sweet kids haven’t seen much of me. And they deserve better.
I can already feel the mom police revving their engines…the sirens are about to blow. I humbly request that you slowly take the keys out of the ignition and read…to the end…before deciding on my punishment.
Here at the Cypress Initiative, a lot of our time and energy is spent in classrooms, helping kids of all ages learn about their SPARK. A few times a year, we also make teaching teachers a priority through our SPARK training programs and we love it!
What would I do differently if in every moment, I knew no matter what I faced, not only could I find the courage, ability, and resilience inside myself to be ok, but that I didn’t have to go searching for it because it’s there already just waiting for me to fall into it?
Rarely do I engage in “Facebook Politicking” or political conversations. In fact, I’m almost proud to say I’ve only taken the bait 3 times in the past year. With the US election around the corner and the circus our political system has turned into, I would say that statistic is a win for any citizen of this country.
At The Cypress Initiative we spend a lot of time talking about WHAT we do. We also spend a lot of time telling others about the HOW. But we don’t spend a lot of time sharing our WHY…