My parents lived by the values of discipline, honesty, honor, persistence, and hard work. They parented based on these values and it served my brother and me very well, until I had my own children. My two young sons were in conflict a great deal beginning at age six and three. The life skills of discipline, honesty, honor, persistence, and hard work that served me so well up to this point in my life did not work so well with my young family. I realized I did not have the skills to support my children’s emotional needs. I knew if I was able to get to the root of what they were fighting about; the fighting would naturally subside.
In November of 2007, I took a 1/2 Nonviolent Communication (aka Mindful Communication) parenting workshop. I then immersed myself in the study and more importantly, the practice of communicating mindfully. It was at a local practice group where my stories were heard without judgement; enabling me to begin the lifelong journey of self-compassion and self-acceptance. Things began to shift within me as it was the first time in my life I was able to meet my own emotional needs. It also revealed to me the root of what my children were fighting about. Ultimately, it led to shifts within our family from which I was able to create deep connections with my boys.
In 2013, a teacher in my school district was going through the yearlong certification with Mindful Schools. Deep inside, I knew this program was not only going to better my communication skills, but I was going to gain more awareness into other areas of my life. In 2016, I became a certified Mindful Schools Mindfulness Instructor. Today, I share mindfulness with high school students. They have discovered how it can provide them with an easier access to calm. I am currently a Teacher in Training with Making Friends with Yourself (MFY); A Mindful Self Compassion for Teens. We launched our first cohort in January, 2019. I have been touched by the insights our students have tapped into. Little do they know how much they are supporting me in furthering my own personal self-compassion journey; for which I will always be grateful for.