Category Archives: childhood

in it.

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with the return of the school year

comes the return of our outdoor adventure days.

 

“we could have never loved the earth so well if we had had no childhood in it.”

-george eliot

 

 

crack the whip.

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“crack the whip’ sculpture – sunset hills, flint, mi

j. seward johnson, sculptor

being the youngest in our neighborhood gang

i was often the smallest

finding myself on the end of ‘the whip’ during this game

sometimes it felt like i was flying

and highly likely that i was.

“being smart as a whip means knowing when not to crack it’

-vera nazarian

 

 

beginning.

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the little ones came to school

most for the first time ever

 filling our room with emotion and energy

a few minutes into our day

one had me write

an urgent note to her mom

that read:

“bring the car!”

we’re all tired and mostly all happy

tomorrow we begin again.

“be willing to be a beginner every single morning.”

-meister eckhart

at the school show.

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one of my favorite things

is to go to school shows

i love every kind of kid up there

 bored

nervous

awkward

moving

bouncing

spinning

hiding in back

 overly enthusiastic

staring straight ahead

giggling

belting it out

faking the lyrics

wearing mismatched shoes

in a fancy outfit

whispering to a stage neighbor

giving it their all

waving to family

looking proud

non-stop smiling

have their own rhythm different from the rest

whether

dancing

singing

acting

playing anything that makes a musical sound

performance art

athletic feats

comedy

any kind of talent show

poetry reading

costumed or not.

i am all in.

“sometimes I was in school plays,

but only when the kid they’d originally picked got sick and they asked me to substitute.”

-peter falk

“i remember acting in a school play about the melting pot when I was very little.

there was a great big pot onstage.

on the other side of the pot was a little girl who had dark hair,

and she and i were representing the italians.

and i thought: is that what an italian looked like?”

-al pacino

“i did a school play when I was 10 where I played a cold germ infecting a whole classroom of kids.

the play was called ‘Piffle It’s Only a Sniffle.’

i’d never had so much fun. It was a thrill.”

-kim cattrall

wilding.

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 back in time on a summer’s day

when your parents thought

you and your friends of all ages

were just pedaling around the block for hours

but in that time you really

explored abandoned houses and those still under construction

built your own underground fort

jumped in the mud to see if it was quicksand

left your socks behind

met a new kid

balanced on a a board going over the water to get to the other side

found a golf ball

explored the gravel pit

rolled down a hill backwards

shared snacks that fell in the dirt

had the best day ever

every single day.

“keep your children wild, don’t make them grow up too fast.”

– brooke hampton

a wish for my students on their last day.

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“there is nothing wrong with loving the crap out of everything.

negative people find their walls.

so never apologize for your enthusiasm.

never.ever.ever.

-ryan adams

 

may you all live like this forever. and ever. and ever.

love, your teacher

(who lives like this too)

invisible.

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i can identify with this little one

 when i was a child

i believed

 when i had

my sunglasses on

no one could see me

now, i’m left wondering…

“vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.”

-jonathan swift

above water.

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i first crossed paths

with this brave and amazing future author (trish kearney)

years ago on her blog:

“my thoughts on a page”

https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/8642668

where she wrote about

her family, her careers, her loves and losses, her daily life in ireland

when i later traveled to ireland

we met in person

(even though her children warned her i might really be a male serial killer)

we spent a great afternoon at an outdoor pub

near the water on a beautiful day

getting to know each other

i had no idea what her whole story was

until she began writing posts about her childhood

 floating the idea of writing her memoir

including painful buried trauma she had endured

as a young championship swimmer

over time she gained confidence

decided to tell her story

to find personal peace

to hold her tormentor responsible

to no longer be a victim

to help others who might not be ready to speak.

what followed was

her book, “above water”

a podcast, “where is george gibney?”

and unforeseen consequences

both good and bad.

this is a book of truths

of regaining power over one’s own life

of bravery

of survival

 of living to tell the tale

of an unbroken spirit

of healing

of helping others.

i give it my highest personal recommendation

here’s to you, tric, and to all who suffer in silence

you are their brave voice for each and every one of them

and i’m so proud to call you my friend.

“you don’t drown by falling in the water; you drown by staying there.”

-Edwin Louis Cole 

 

“above water” is available at:

the book depository (paperback – free worldwide shipping)

https://www.bookdepository.com/Above-Water/9781529333640

 

amazon u.s. – kindle format (and on june 21 (presale) in paperback) in the u.s.

amazon uk – available now

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Above-Water-Childhood-Enduring-Survivors-ebook/dp/B08HMPF1PP

Reviews:

Not an easy read but an essential one … an important book that celebrates the power of the human spirit―Irish Independent

A completely compelling book … this is ultimately a story of Trish Kearney’s triumph―Irish Times

Trish Kearney’s memoir is proof that the powerless and betrayed can survive and triumph―Sunday Independent

An extraordinary story, at times heart-breaking but ultimately inspiring. Trish’s courage, her determination and her warmth light up those dark secret places―Woman’s Way

A powerful story beautifully told―Irish Examiner

Inspirational―Sunday Business Post

About the Author

Trish Kearney is a writer and mother of five living in Cork, Ireland. Her weekly ‘It’s My Life’ column ran in the Irish Examiner for over two years. She also has a popular blog, ‘My Thoughts on a Page’ and was awarded Best Personal Blog and Best Writer at the Irish Parenting Blog Awards in 2015.
Above Water is her first book.

mud-soaked.

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finding the mud was such a delight

starting out slow

checking how deep it was with a stick

walking, then running, then jumping, then splashing

only one ‘quicksand’ victim who we unstuck

boots dumped out after

filled with water dirt wood chips, rocks, sticks and unknown mushy things

ending with

a pair of mud-soaked socks

drying in the sun

and so much tired fun.

” mud is the most poetical thing in the world.”

-reginald horace blyth

 

show or tell?

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not my baby brother, but a similar-sized baby with one more hair. 
my brother was born
when i was in my very early elementary years
i was so excited when he was born
he was the newest thing our family after all
i wanted to bring him in to share with my class
during show and tell
i couldn’t believe it when my mom
refused to let me take him on the bus and bring him in
telling me i had to bring a picture of him instead
i was furious
i couldn’t believe it
she was so mean
the nerve of her
i ended up showing his picture
told stories about how he cried and was loud and smelled but was cute
and years later
when i had my own children
i kind of got it.
“maybe there’s room for both, telling as well as showing. it’s something to think about.”
― a.d. aliwat