Today is my daughter’s 23rd birthday and as mama, I am doing a lot of reflecting on
times past. So many of her ‘firsts’ she got to experience really young, and yet there will continue
to be ‘firsts’ throughout her life. I remember the first day she got to go to preschool with Mr.
Scholl and I was terrified. A flood of questions were going off in my head as I sent my child to be
supported, educated, and loved by another. What, loved by her teacher? Yes. That is exactly
what I wanted for my kid: to have her teacher love and nurture her as I would. Was I crazy? Not
in my own mind — but to our education system? Yes, I was crazy. How could they possibly treat
my child like I would want them too? Teachers are unique, and are all trained differently.
I honor teachers for all they endure. They do not get to dictate how the students have
been treated before they enter their classroom. I found myself continually wondering how her
teachers might approach any trauma, sensitivity, indifference, fairness, emotions and fears in
the classroom. Every year, they are immersed in a classroom full of kids with their own stories.
I knew of my girl’s sensitivity when she was very young. I don’t mean sensitive in a
fragile way, but sensitive in that she is very connected to her senses. Somewhere along the path
those senses got stifled. For her to survive she had to put on a suit of armour — something that
protected her from feeling at all. I write this as tears roll down my cheeks. Her teachers could
not protect her from the verbal abuse of her peers and the self-inflicted pressures of the daily
demands. Hindsight is a powerful tool only if you can shift the outcome from what does not work
to what does work.

How could I, as Mom, influence her surroundings to suit her? These values that she
grew up with were how I wanted people to treat her and how I wanted her to treat herself and
others. My rose-colored glasses wanted these kids to be kind to each other, to speak the truth,
to have integrity, to build boundaries, and to know that they have enough and are enough. I
wished for contentment for these kids: for them to be comfortable in their own skin.
Cleanliness is not just about jumping in the shower. It’s about where we put our thoughts
on a daily basis. Clarity is a quality that comes from being a keen listener to yourself and others.
Self-reflection is an ability to rise above the self to look back in with loving eyes and notice
what’s working, what’s not, and how you’re choosing to show up in the world. All these practices
are what Yoga is to me. These wishes that I had for my kids were really what I wanted all kids to
have access too. These strong values I have been teaching my girls for the past 23 years are
what I wanted to see in our classrooms for all our students and teachers.
Today, I know I’m not crazy. I have a vision for our education system that is more loving,
supportive, sensitive, and encouraging than it is — so that these young developing minds get
their chance to thrive. I wish to empower teachers with their own practice of self-love, self-care,
self-resilience, and self-study. I wish to empower students to know that no matter what, they are
loved. They are here to give and receive love so that we may all become more sensitive to
ourselves and to each other.
Our senses are how we interpret experiences that land deep in our memories. May we
always remember that we’re made from love, born out of love, and are full of love. Conscious
Classroom is about serving our schools. We are building an environment where students don’t
have to defend themselves from each other but actually band together knowing they are a part
of something bigger and grander as they grow forward. It only took me 23 years to figure out
how to send my girl to school knowing she would be treated with the same kind of love and
respect she receives at home. Her world looks different now in her third year of college but my
desire to support, nurture, and love her as she grows will never falter.