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A Day-Trip: Franklin Institute and Bresslergroup Debate

Last Thursday morning, most of the ALC-NYC crew headed towards East Harlem for a day of philosophy, visitors, Japanese, wrestling, music, and more.

Meanwhile, I texted with my co-conspiritors and packed a notebook into my field trip bag.

Learning is natural and happening all the time.

I’m generally a fan of our foundational principles at ALC, but the first one (above) is my favorite. As soon as we stop pretending that learning only happens through schooling, we get to start thinking about the kinds of experiences we want contributing to our education. Which means field trips. In this case, it meant a day trip to Philadelphia with Douglas, Javair, and Geva.

All three were still a bit tired after a long weekend in Boston for MIT Media Lab’s Virtual Reality Hack-a-thon (where they were finalists!), but Javair’s imminent departure made them all determined to pack as much as they could into their last few days collaborating in person. They’d met my friend Nick McGill over Maker Faire weekend, when he was trend-spotting and they (well…Douglas…) were talking game-design. They enjoyed picking his brain, and when I mentioned that the company he works for, Bresslergroup, was holding a debate on the nature of innovation, they made clear that both the content and the company interested them. So off we went.

Having two wonderful co-facilitators this year means I can do things like spend whole school days off-site with two kids and a parent. We got a decently early start, and managed to arrive in Philly just in time to have lunch with Nick. When he went back to work, we walked over to the Franklin Institute to check out their Robot Revolution exhibit. We compared robotic “hands,” played Tic-Tac-Toe, and scrambled a Rubix Cube. I particularly liked the wall-climbing robot that was designed to mimic a lizard. Douglas was more interested in the robotic baby seal, while Geva and Javair competed to catch the eye of a face-tracking Robotis. Then I listened while they discussed the wheels and programming of the soccer bots. I…couldn’t really follow. But I did get to share the pendulum and walk-through heart with them after we left the robots!

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 The doors for the Bresslergroup event opened around 6. We headed over a little early, hoping to get a glimpse of Nick’s workspace. Can’t really write about what we saw, but our tour inspired lots of excitement and questions. Curious to see how long it takes before I’m handed a wishlist for our Makerspace 😉

After our tour, we headed to the lobby for the great debate. Douglas picked front-row seats for us, and I ended up sitting across the aisle from my crew. Watching their faces was as much fun as listening to the debate, but I was eager to hear their thoughts on our journey home…especially since they voted for different sides at the end.

 Innovation: driven by research or technology? Do you invest in seeking to understand your customer base’s wants and needs? Or do you presume they can’t know to ask for a tool they can’t imagine, so you invest in developing new technologies? The question got us talking about the nature of both creativity and of markets. Like a good debate question, it gave us lots to consider as we reflected on the evening.

Douglas voted for Team Research at the end of the evening. He made clear that his vote was not necessarily aligned with his personal opinion; rather, he explained that he heard Team Research make multiple sound arguments to support their side, where he heard Team Tech stick mostly to one argument. He really enjoyed the “quips” and pleasantly competitive banter from both teams, though he mentioned that he’d have preferred moderation that prioritized point-counterpoint discussion over polling of participants for each question.

Javair voted for Team Technology, in large part because he agreed that you have to create a product for people to interact with before you can research [using technology] how they receive it. He really appreciated the dynamic between the teams and the distinct contributions of each individual.

In the end, we agreed with the debaters that Research and Technology are interdependent. Since we play in alternative education, we touched on the evening’s assumption that we value innovation and have the courage to pursue it, one way or another. It’s an assumption that holds true for all of us, but we agreed it’d be interesting to discuss what it takes to get someone to that starting point. And what did we decide is necessary for those interested in innovation? Douglas said that a willingness to compromise and incorporate others’ ideas, without losing your vision, is invaluable in general and particularly helpful when collaborating on new projects. Javair advised that aspiring innovators choose questions and causes they feel passionately about so that they can stay motivated to persevere through challenges. He also cited the creation story of the video-game Prison Architect to support Douglas’ idea that willingness to adapt plans and change direction opens space for surprise successes.

Our verdict on the evening all in all? We arrived back in NYC happily exhausted and plotting our next Philly trip. Hopefully there’ll be more engineering adventures for us soon!

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*I intentionally tried not to mention people’s ages, to avoid inviting assumptions about their knowledge and capabilities. I also left out much of what Geva and I had to say about the debate…mostly because it’s much more fun and interesting focusing on young people’s voices.

The Rise and Fall (and Rise Again) of the Kanban

“Individuals and interactions over processes and tools…Responding to change over following a plan…”

When I was first looking for information on Agile Software Development, I found these lines and smiled. It makes so much sense: meet people where they are, pay attention to relationships and dynamics, have tools but don’t get attached to them, plan but stay agile.

 

This year has been a year of reflecting and reframing. Are there too many loud, little kids…or have we failed to adjust our space to meet the needs of a different group of humans? Did we struggle this fall because of the unbalanced ratio of new kids to culture keepers…or because we failed to see that we were starting with a mostly new group and needed a strong tone-setting to support them? Are Kanbans outdated as a Spawn Point tool now that we have Trello…or are they actually a tool to meet more advanced needs than we have at the moment?

Oh the Kanban. It’s definitely pretty and impressive to have a wall of individual Kanbans in each Spawn Point. In the office Spawn Point, we were serious about using our Kanbans until after winter break. There had been talk for a while about the relevance of the tool: kids said it was redundant when there was Trello, messy when Post-Its fell, and time-wasting when people updated their boards during meeting. But we also talked about tracking our intentions, creating visualizations of our intentions, and the potential for inspiring each other by sharing what we’re each up to. So the boards stayed…until we came back from break with several new students. Then the obstacle course of chairs and bodies in the office meant getting to our boards took more work than they saved as a tool. We let them fall out of use, and I spent meetings typing students’ intentions/reflections into their Trello boards.

It felt a little odd…Not all kids have their own devices or access to their Trellos, so they would have to seek Ryan or I out to ask if they wanted a reminder of their intentions during the day. Recording only on Trello allowed for light and efficient documentation, but it also created a barrier between the kids and the lists of their intentions…limiting access rather than empowering kids with it.

*Side note about the office spawn: I don’t run meetings…I scribe while the kids take turns facilitating. I also don’t pick facilitators. They do it themselves.*

At some point in the early spring, Trello started lagging. @timotree and @ryanshollenberger solved the problem in the other Spawn Point by pre-loading everyone’s Trello boards; my computer would still lag when I tried to update the boards, so I took to documenting people’s intentions and reflections by hand. Doing so made more work for me, updating their Trellos after, but it allowed me to document without slowing meeting with my perpetually loading computer. @abram had mentioned that I could solve the Trello lag problem by exporting all the old cards on kids’ boards to spreadsheets and then deleting them from the active boards, but after doing one I decided it was too time-consuming to do for everyone while school is in session. It still felt like there was a lighter, more effective solution, but I was resigned to hand-writing, post-meeting Trello updating, and setting aside time over the summer to export/delete/fight-the-lag.

Then two weeks ago, most of the kids left on a trip and I sat alone with my thoughts. I thought about what I wanted to see (kids interacting with their intentions and reflections, with the interaction prioritized over the documentation value) and what the blocks to that seemed to be (flow of the room, lack of interest in the present tool, lack of clarity from a group of mostly new kids about the intentions behind Spawn structure).

Naming that last block sparked a revelation: I’d been operating from a place of wanting to build on what we started last year, but only three of the twelve kids in the room had that foundation. I needed to think of ways to support the three in continuing to grow, but the room and meeting structure needed to be adjusted based on the people in the room. So I back-tracked.

After asking permission in Spawn one morning, I rearranged the room to open space and move the Kanban wall-of-whiteboards to a more accessible place. Then I erased all the Kanbans and just wrote each student’s name up.

When it was meeting time, I stood at the board to take notes instead of sitting with a pen and notepad. The kids were rapt. They coached me on spelling game titles. They looked at each others’ boards for memory triggers. They asked me to cross things out and check things off…It felt really good.

I wondered if I’d be able to convince them to update their own lists by the end of this year. I glanced a the giant office Kanban I had made for school administration tasks and wondered how long it would take before a kid asked to change from having a list to having a Kanban…how long before they would be looking for workflow management rather than just a holding place for their ideas.

Things went very smoothly for a week and a half.

But I had a Philly trip planned. I’d be missing school on Friday, and I’d have most of the office’s practiced culture keepers / facilitators with me. I know the kids can run meeting without me when they’re all together, but for a handful of them to do it together right after a new structure has been introduced? It was going to be a test.

Thursday, I told them that I wanted those of us who would be on the Philly trip to let others practice running the day’s Spawn Point meetings. I suggested people update their own boards before meeting; they instead passed a marker around and tried to each speak while writing when it was their turn. The meeting went ok, but it was longer and messier than it needed to be. When they left, I photographed the boards then wiped them clean for the next day. I hoped they’d manage ok.

Monday, I walk into Spawn in the morning to see the boards all neatly updated. When the alarm goes off to signal that it’s time for morning meeting, I walk into the office to see two kids holding markers. They announce that they’ll be running meeting. I smile, sit, then watch as they take turns scribing and co-facilitating. At the afternoon meeting, @pigcraft8 jumps up to update his own board. @fashionwithpassion helps him with spelling.

By Tuesday, @pigcraft8 and @pigsfly have asked for access to their Trello boards so they can update those themselves, too.

Now it’s Wednesday, that last day of a short week. The kids now totally run the office Spawn Point. They’ve gotten practiced at picking roles, facilitating, and now note-taking. New kids are supported stepping into leadership roles during meetings. And I…am delightfully surprised once again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This week!

It’s very exciting to set up new students with blogs 🙂 Especially when they jump into writing independently, leaving me 10 minutes to write alongside them!

We had three students visiting this week. They jumped right into offerings and games with other kids, which was great to see. I spent a lot of time working on gathering records, preparing and following up after the assembly meeting, spreading the word about the summer training program Ryan and I are running, and trying to be outside.

I had a really great time in the park on Wednesday with @ryanshollenberger @pigcraft8 @agilesaylor @creeperclaws and one of the visitors. I got to climb trees with kids, which has to be one of my all-time favorite activities. I also got to take two nice walks with @serenagermany and @thewitchqueen908, who discovered a new crepe place.

The assembly meeting on Tuesday went really well. I used to be really uncomfortable about running meetings, but it’s gotten easier as I’ve practiced. It’s been really helpful to have Ryan and Tomis to work/play with.

Also this week, I watched part of Cooked, the Michael Pollen documentary that’s on Netflix right now. I also went to Julius’ parents’ art show. I hadn’t looked carefully at their art before, but I really enjoyed it. The diversity of the works at the show was really exciting; this was the first show in the gallery’s new space, and I’m excited to keep going back to see how the shows change.

 

Making it official.

Growing up, I was often told that I should go to school to become a professor.

Meanwhile, I read stories about and observed the lives of master teachers. And I started asking how they got to where they were.

A pattern soon emerged, and it made a lot of sense to me: the master teachers–the ones who were most interesting, impactful, and expert in their fields–had pursued experience rather than certifications. They had made decisions in their lives that gave them chances to practice and deepen their expertise. Sometimes this meant studying or getting titles, but it often meant doing the work with an intention to continue learning. When they became masters–at knitting or acting or writing or horseback riding or astronomy or geology–members of their communities saw this and spread the word. Students sought them out. Sometimes certifications or titles followed, but that wasn’t really the point.

They cared about doing the work and doing it well. Each had an underlying goal of personal growth towards expertise and confidence…a goal which frees the learner from dependence on external progress markers and acknowledgements (though some of us create our own progress markers and acknowledgement often feels nice). It was often a longer and harder journey to become a teacher than it was to acquire the certification and position of one. But it also sounded like a more interesting, honest, and fulfilling one. Guess which I chose 😉

These are my thoughts today, because I just requested a certification–an entitlement–and I feel really good about it. We have a peer-review process for those engaged at ALCs to become officially acknowledged as ALFs, and the PRs are usually convened at ALF Summer. I missed the first year of peer-reviews, held space for others the second year, and am pretty sure there will be more urgent conversations on our agenda this year. But it’s time. I’ve been doing the work and growing in expertise, so the title feels like a description of what I’m already doing…which is how I prefer my titles 😉 And while I’m content with personal rituals to mark transitions in my life, I no longer live in a small town where word-of-mouth is enough to orient community members to each other. When we live and work in a spread-out community, it becomes important to enact rituals that externalize our internal level-ups. There are the relationship-nurturing opportunities in such rituals, shrinking distance and grounding us together; that said, what are really exciting for me as part of a growing network are the relationship-starting opportunities that arise from such rituals. Asking for a community conversation to make clear what I do and am skilled at opens space for new ALFs to approach me seeking support on their own journeys or offering support for mine. This is super exciting.

I’m very fortunate (a reflection that comes from the awareness that my friends @mandyjayh and @jacobcb are thinking about initiating their own transition-marking rituals): since I am looking to the ritual to communicate what is–rather than hoping it will validate an identity or community relationship that I’m not already secure in–I can choose a virtual peer-review (more scheduling flexibility! yay!) and trust that I’ll get what I need. It’s interesting and fun for me to play with translating a group ritual into a remote one, but if my situation were different I’d probably opt to wait until I could convene an in-person PR.

Curious and excited to see how things play out.

<3

 

This week!

It feels like I could write separate posts for each thing that happened this week…The days are just packed, as Bill Watterson might say if he could see us.

We returned from Mid-Winter Break for Oliver’s third week, Saylor’s first, and Aiden talking about adding a third day with us. @Bear was back from his travels, with stories. @Tomis was in town, running Parent Interest Nights, having meetings, and generally being the Tomis we love. @rochellehudson has been here all week playing with Makey-Makey pianos, being adored by @pigsfly and @thewitchqueen908 and @serenagermany, and reminding me that putting energy to stay connected to facilitators at other ALCs needs to be a priority of mine (because they’re fantastic and inspiring…of course…).

I continued reading a book [Far From The Tree] that I started over the break, that I’m really excited to blog about. It has me thinking about how I read a lot but don’t read at school (because I can’t listen for kids and read at the same time…). Expect a new series of posts and hashtags, probably sometime over the summer, about awesome books.

This week I’ve also been researching how to cook eggplant, how to run anti-oppression workshops, how to write grants, political happenings in Ukraine and Venezuela, how to convert data from a spreadsheet into a word cloud, the history of sign language…Whew!

@agilesaylor and I had a park trip where we climbed rocks and built a fairy house. @serenagermany and Rochelle and I picked up a Greenmarket Fresh Box. ALC-NYC had its first ever game night, @creeperclaws learned how to super swing herself by watching and copying @loveabby, and I had an awesome conversation today with @timotree and @jacobcb about methods of culture setting and adjusting.

Signing off with a thought that next change-up, I may want to propose a system so kids are set up to support each other blogging a bit more (they already do quite a lot, which I really appreciate!). There’s an early spring in the air…

 

 

 

 

Broadcasting

It’s a behavior that various magazines I read as a kid attributed to pregnant women and children in the early stages of speech development. You’ve likely encountered it…”I want macaroni” or “I’m going to the bathroom” or “I’m drawing now.” These are all examples of broadcasting.

Now, I’m not pregnant or celebrating a new ability to express myself verbally. And between us, I’m most comfortable keeping my thoughts and feelings to myself. Or at least keeping them close. So…why am I broadcasting? And writing about it?

A few years ago, a younger ALC kid who I was fairly close with off-handedly mentioned that he never sees me struggle. By “mentioned” I mean that he declared, based on his experience, that I don’t ever struggle. And I struggled with this.

On the one hand, I’ve put many years into learning how to manage rough seas gracefully. On the other hand, if I think it’s important for kids to learn that struggling is perfectly normal–is something they should expect and make peace with if they aspire to try any new thing ever–then I have to figure out how to model that grace while pointing to the forces behind it.

In some situations, it’s easy to make my struggles visible. When I participated regularly in acro-balance, for example, or when I practice piano in the library, my challenges are pretty apparent. But usually my struggles look more like remembering to eat, overcoming shyness around new people, managing assumptions in relationships…that is, even if a young person were looking, they would be hard to see. And so, intentionally, as a facilitation upgrade, I started broadcasting.

To clarify, it doesn’t look like walking around school narrating my every action or turning small happenings into epic productions. Either would be counterproductive and annoying. I’m also always aware that what I contribute to the conversation influences school culture, so I choose language that acknowledges an obstacle and declares how I intend to engage with it, knowing I have to be careful to not accidentally end up communicating insecurity or glamorizing self-deprecation instead. My broadcasting usually consists of thinking-out-loud (“I’m a little nervous about this event, but I know I’ll have fun once I’m there, especially if I try to meet at least two new people right away”).

Sometimes my broadcasts get really radical…I ask the kids for help. At least two definitions of love that I’ve encountered include asking the other for help as an expression of love. Maybe this is because doing so requires becoming vulnerable, acknowledging the other’s power, and providing an opportunity for the other person to act in a way that affirms your relationship. Regardless, asking for help is something I would like to become better at. So when I address a struggle by asking for help–“I’m not feeling very hungry today, but I know I should eat. Do you mind if I join you when you get lunch? I’ll remember if we have plans to spend that time together?”–and kids agree, I usually thank them for both helping with my immediate struggle and for helping me practice asking for help.

It felt a little strange at first, but I’ve worked broadcasting so thoroughly into my facilitation practice that I sometimes catch myself composing broadcasts in non-school settings…like the facebook status I wanted to write tonight about talking to people on the subway. I may still publish that status. The point is, I thought to write it mostly as a reflex, and then I stopped to check what I was doing and why. Since I like the idea of adults facilitating each other’s growth, and since I’ve been told by non-students that my tendency to undershare can make me feel distant, I’ll probably keep broadcasting outside of school, in moderation, and see what happens.

Figuring out how to balance my quieter, listener self with my more expressive facilitator self is an ongoing struggle. It’s especially challenging when my quiet self gets nervous about sounding narcissistic, even while my facilitator self insists that it’s important to share my experiences if others might learn from them. I keep trying, though, because I really want to be both my authentic self and an excellent facilitator. It’s definitely possible…I just have to stay aware and patient.

Thank you for supporting shared reflections by engaging with the ALC website and my blog! I appreciate your help 😉

January 15th…week end…

I sat down to write with all kinds of snippets that I was excited to share, but in reflecting on them to find a theme for the week (an approach to blogging that I’d like to play with transitioning to rather than listing happenings each week) I found a deep feeling of contentment.

Days are full. Projects are abundant.

My heart is full, and opportunities to learn are abundant…if I stay humble and trusting and clear-sighted.

I had intentions to practice piano and Spanish everyday at school, but there were visitors, questions, and emails calling me, so I released that intention (without getting upset with myself or the surprises I gave my time to instead) and just decided to practice at home.

We had two visiting students this week: @chimp and @hlove2362. Visiting weeks are all so different, depending on the community, the kids, and the parents. One common pattern, though, is that parents show up a little anxious about whether their child will engage with the community and make a place for themself in it. Usually, those kids have no trouble jumping in when given the time and space to do so. I’m excited that the kids invited both visitors to join the community; it would be really fun to have them both around.

We also had a bunch of other visitors! From NYC and NC and Philly and Australia and… 🙂 They all integrated themselves pretty seamlessly; I love walking down the hall and seeing really age-mixed groups clustered around different conversations, games, and projects. Especially when they’ve just met each other and some are @thewitchqueen908 and @serenagermany who frequently talk about being unsure how to meet new people. It was especially fun to see @liam’s gathering of spies in the Library!

Big happenings this week included a field trip to The Uncommons and a Culture Committee meeting.

We went to The Uncommons on Wednesday. In the morning, I got a couple of texts asking if we were still going even though it was 22 degrees out. I responded that we were and headed to school wondering how many kids would bail on the trip, intimidated by the thought of walking from the subway to the cafe in such temperatures. Fantastically, we ended up going as a big group! Thanks @serenagermany @thewitchqueen908 @pigsfly @xxxxpgainzxxx @agilealfie @douglasawesome @chimp and @abram! Even more surprisingly, everyone wanted to go play in the playground at Washington Square after we finished our games!

I also really enjoyed the subway rides both to and from The Uncommons. On the way there, a conversation about writing intros for the Peter Gray event flyers turned into a conversation about how they would introduce @Tomis. Which turned into planning to collaboratively write a book. @xxxxpgainzxxx @douglasawesome and @agilealfie had all kinds of ideas for titles. With @thewitchqueen908 @pigsfly and @serenagermany they talked about each writing a chapter about their experience of ALC. They also decided we should have a chapter introducing the school and probably two chapters for @tomis. They debated the ideal lengths of their chapters–a paragraph each? a page each? ten pages each?–and didn’t balk when I proposed they start drafts for review in two weeks. Hearing how excited they were, and knowing that books by kids about alternative schools are both rare and fascinating, I proposed that we aim to invite Peter Gray for another event a year from the upcoming one (Jan 28th) and have that also be our book release party. They weren’t sure it was possible, but I committed to get the book published if they actually write pieces of it. I’m going to bring it up when we get back to school next week. I really hope they’re serious about this idea.

Culture Committee I won’t go into too much detail about. But I want to say that I love being part of those meetings. The kids walk into the quiet room, shut the door, and then focus completely on listening deeply and responding with the aim of supporting the growth of those involved. They consistently do a remarkable job.

 

The last happening that I’ll comment on is the first meeting of Finance Club. We’ve been talking about it for weeks and I made us a nice whiteboard modeled similarly to the one ALC Mosaic uses and the appointed time came and…*crickets*

We did gather a small crowd, belatedly. I had expected the meeting to start with big goals and dreams and wishes, but instead we got right into the juicy stuff. We’re starting with $50/month. I shared with the kids that Mosaic has increased their monthly FC budget to $250/month, and they immediately asked why they had such a small amount…as someone knocked over the projector. So we had a conversation about how breaking/wasting resources means they need replacing more frequently. Part of the intention for budget club is to foster a sense of ownership and responsibility for shared resources at school (while teaching money management and giving the kids a say in customizing the space); if we want more money to play with each month, we need to stop breaking computer parts and ruining paintbrushes.

The meeting only lasted about half an hour. The kids asked a bunch of questions about the current financial situation of the school (which I answered as honestly as I could), decided promptly that they were going to save this month’s $50, brainstormed which kinds of things we should save for (gym time and gym-type materials, to channel raucous energy into), and adjourned. I wondered if anything had really happened during the meeting and how many months it would take to see the effects of this FC experiment.

Then the next day, I walked in to hear some FC members reminding other kids to be careful with our cables and computers. They requested that everyone conserve post-its and put the caps back on the sharpies. I smiled and laughed to myself…reminded again that the kids see and hear everything, even when it seems like they may not.

Last (in school) post of the Year

Each school year–each day, really–brings expected joys and challenges.

This year started with lots of challenges. Mostly growing pains in the sense that we started the year with a 4:3 ratio of returning to new kids. Even if all the established ones were culture keepers and all the new ones showed up with culturally neutral habits, it would have been work to acculturate that many people at once. But since we’re all complex humans, not all of our established crew set great examples and some of the new kids showed up struggling to keep agreements and using some tough language. While I felt like I was barely keeping up with the back end running-of-the-school stuff I’d taken on and was so super grateful that Ryan is such an aware, dependable, and stable partner.

I reflect that it felt like we might have bitten off more than we could chew. For a solid two months, I wondered and breathed and trusted. And drank a lot of coffee.

And it’s starting to feel like we may have made it through the toughest part of the year. Are there still challenges with some of the newer kids keeping agreements, people using mindful language, and all of us navigating the landscape of different communication styles and emotions we are and are in each day? Yes.

But there’s also been tremendous growth. I’m seeing leadership from people who were very neutral last year. Leaders learning how to boundary set, not take things personally, and release the need to try transforming/controlling others. More independent travelers. More communicative and responsible off-site learners.

Most people are keeping agreements now. The language that I’d like to see softened isn’t offensive, just harsher than I’d like. And 18 humans social-emotional self-regulation in a shared space? That’s a perpetual dance, and one I’m grateful to be part of.

 

On expectations…

This was a week in which I reflected on the difference between intentions and expectations.

Twice, I set the intention with kids to go ice skating. I intended to reconnect with a friend who’s been off-grid. Intended to get new body art. To stretch. To blog. To clean.

I called these my intentions, but they were more like expectations. And it took watching everything happen in unexpected ways for me to see the expectations in my pseudo-intentions.

The ice skating rink was closed the two days I could go, so we played in the park instead. My friend showed up, but just long enough to announce that he’s leaving again. My art won’t be finished until February, my stretching was toddler chasing, I spent blogging time de-bugging a computer and reminding kids that blogging is part of the student agreement, and my cleaning was the vacuum-all-the-nooks kind that I feel but no one sees.

Nothing this week seemed to go as intended…

Except that it all did.

I got to play with kids outside, which is what I really wanted from ice skating. Got to tell a friend I care and wish him well, show an artist I value his work highly enough to wait for it, to use my body, to reflect, to reset.

By going with the flow when things didn’t go my way, I got exactly what I’d actually been looking for. And more, because I also am grateful to have been reminded to look for the intentions behind my expectation-intentions.