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Yes, school seems like a scary place these days, but then again, so is our world...

In my 15+ years as a teacher, I've never seen such fear for physical and emotional security as what I've seen this year...and I’ve struggled to find the words to talk about it but I think it’s important that I try to share.
In addition to the social-emotional support that teachers offer in an average year, I’ve had to council my high school and university students after 3 separate shootings that have forever changed the way they’ll view their world; In the last month, I’ve also tried to support them through 2 threats that they suspected were aimed at our own high school. The last 1 was the day my dance team left for the State Championships and it was a frightening whirlwind of emotions for everyone. My main solace was getting on a bus with my students and driving away from the situation, but my students and I continued to worry about our school for the rest of the day. Although I’m glad my students all know that our dance class is a safe place, and that they get the chance to e…
Recent posts

Why can't they be Pretty in BLUE??

It seemed so simple. For my 10th birthday, I asked for my party colors to be pink,blue, and yellow—so there would be something for girls, boys, and anyone who didn’t like the color the color they were “supposed to like.” Lol. Because who says all girls have to like pink? Or all boys have to prefer blue?? Out of the mouth of babes, right?! 
Just a few short 10...20...ish years later, I find that it's no longer so simple. As grown ups, we seem to have a lot of concrete ideas about what the people around us--including the children around us--do and wear and feel and express.

But when...and why...did we start to think this was worth judging?? As people, we are so much more than pink or blue, or skirts or ties, or other people’s expectations of our identity! And that’s not meant as a new age idea or liberal agenda—I believe this idea can be completely independent from social or political propaganda. It’s simply about respect, and in some cases, about the willingness to look beyond our o…

Is North Korea attacking Moses Lake, WA?

Disclaimer #1: Regarding the title question--NO! Or at least, it's highly doubtful that North Korea or anyone else considers Moses Lake an upcoming target. But if you read the measly 4 paragraphs in this article, you'll understand the reason for the title.

Disclaimer #2: Regarding the following article--The years have been changed to protect the innocent...and the youthfully aging author...And yeah, that's as close as I could come to having a sense of humor when dealing with something so serious. 

When I was ___ years old, still in grade school, I had a panic attack because I was afraid the Gulf War was going to come to Moses Lake, Washington and kill everyone I knew. It surely sounded absurd to a grownup, and probably even to a less intense elementary schooler, but to me, it seemed perfectly plausible. In one of the most compassionate parenting moments that I can recall, my mother posted a 3' world map in the hallway next to my bedroom and marked it with places we shou…

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day

Here I am again, after months of writing things and not posting them. I have in fact had a lot on my mind. (Those of you who know me personally are not at all shocked, I'm sure, but maybe someone out there doesn't yet realize that, so I felt it was fair to say.) But my whole life, I've done this thing where I have too much to say so I say nothing for a while while it bubbles up inside...then I try saying something and it all comes whipping out like a hurricane of then I go back to bottling it up and stating my need for "processing time." Guess that's what's been happening with my sporadic posting for the last few years too. Who would have guessed?

Then there's this other thing I do when I don't know what to say--I obsess over a song, poem, essay, etc. in which someone else said what I couldn't. So to that end, I'm directing you to a few two articles by a cause that I admire very much: To Write Love on Her Arms. If you haven…

Behind the Scenes

WARNING: A moment of transparency, and a rather long post ahead. 

Yesterday, I had my 3rd teaching evaluation of the year and the administrator asked my students a variety of questions, one of which was "Does your teacher demonstrate enthusiasm in her job?" One dancer laughed and said, "She has more energy than the rest of us every morning." Since this was a student I've known years, I later confessed that I'm usually faking my 6AM energy, but that by pretending I'm excited in beginning of each day, I usually make the energy become a reality. (With the help of my 9AM dose of caffeine and B vitamins, at least until it wears off.) She was surprised that she didn't know how I'd really felt all this time.
 And I realized several of my mostly-on-line friends have mentioned similar ideas recently, with kind words about how fun or funny or happy my life seems to be.  (Although those who know me best can attest to what you're about to learn...And I of…