Trump Won, Now What? Have Courage and Be Kind

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A few days before the election, my girls watched Cinderella – again. Not the old school animated version, but the newer Kenneth Branagh film. I’m not a fairytale princess hater, but I don’t much like the messaging of these stories: distraught girl endures hardship, gives up everything or patiently awaits – sometimes while in a deep sleep – for a prince of some sort to rescue her. I’ve lectured my girls on the lack of strong female role models in these tales and I’m pretty sure they get it. All three of them are outspoken and confident, hard workers, considerate thinkers and leaders in their own way. Still, they like a good fairytale every once in a while, especially one featuring a dashing prince (Richard Madden anyone?). Continue reading “Trump Won, Now What? Have Courage and Be Kind”

Compassion is Alive and Well in the 4th Grade

Last month, in honor of the launch of #1000Speak, I posted a special piece about compassion called Teaching Our Girls About Friendship. Writing on a shared theme and posting on the same day as hundreds of other writers worldwide was a mighty, moving event. Reading so many amazing stories and perspectives inspired me, swelled my heart and put a perma-grin on my face for days. The whole experience got me thinking:

If writing and reading about compassion can have this kind of impact on me, an adult, what can it do for our kids? Continue reading “Compassion is Alive and Well in the 4th Grade”

1000 Voices for Compassion: Are You In?

1000SpeakThere are days when I can’t bear to look at my Facebook feed. Cast carelessly in between sweet updates about a friend’s baby, a Vine of his first laugh and photos of rescued puppies are horrific headlines about violence and hatred, fatal accidents and heartless bullies. There is war. There is terror. There is sickness and poverty. There is loneliness and madness. There is judging, criticism and pursed lips. Even the seemingly well-intentioned parenting article about breastfeeding can leave me feeling guilty somehow.  Continue reading “1000 Voices for Compassion: Are You In?”

The Best Advice My Dad Ever Gave Me: Be Kind

My dad and Lilah.
My dad and Lilah.

My work is to remember my dad’s advice to me when I first started dating:

“Remember, it takes a boy a lot of courage to ask a girl out, so say yes if you can. Don’t lead him on, but say yes.”

I spent a good decade keeping this advice in mind, trying valiantly to give a guy a chance as long as he wasn’t creepy or dangerous. I went on a lot of dates with a lot of different people: tech nerds, start-up upstarts, sweet Jewish boys, sweet non-Jewish boys, driven finance guys who kept east coast bank hours, snobbish San Francisco culture vultures, club boys. Continue reading “The Best Advice My Dad Ever Gave Me: Be Kind”

Deep Thoughts From a Late Bloomer

IMG_3181 - Version 2The weeks leading up to my 40th birthday were filled with giddy anticipation, as if I were about to shed a very tattered, old coat and emerge glowing, swathed in silk, to a chorus of angels. Forty seemed to be the magic number, a turning point, a righting of the ship. I’d wake up on my birthday imbued with the Super Powers I’d always wanted: confidence, clarity, purpose.

Instead, I woke up feeling pretty much the same as always: somewhat ambivalent, stressed about minor details, strung out on motherhood and unfocused about the future. Continue reading “Deep Thoughts From a Late Bloomer”