January 7, 2016

Crazy Dreams

I woke up from a crazy dream. We were on the run. Kaia and I. I had managed to hide us away in my in-laws house somewhere in rural Wisconsin. It wasn’t their real house as they live in Milwaukee, but you know how notions get blurred in dreams. We had just out run the vigilante Mormon mob. Yup, they were angry Mormon teens trying to take Kaia away from me because of my heretical views and non-christian parenting philosophy.

We were in the house. Shades drawn. Door locked. I was about to dial 911 for help, when I realised that the phone line was cut and they were about to break the window, when…..I woke up.

It was dark. 5:45am and I was terrified that they would catch us and take Kaia away from me. The fear was more real then any fear I have felt whilst awake in years. My heart was beating and I was convinced I would never see Kaia again, and just the thought of that was terrifying.

So the rest of the day was downhill from there.


At lunch we had a Daraja meeting. Every Thursday, I meet with twelve girls from 6-8th grade and two boys to discuss what it means to me a global concern group. We learn how to run meetings, set agendas, plan fundraiser, raise awareness etc…The first term we did a lot of administrative work and I wanted this meeting, the first of the new year, to be more philosophical and to sow the seeds for an upcoming awareness raising campaign about gender equality.

We had a great conversation about taking back the word Feminism.

But first we had to understand the term. I asked how many of them knew what that word meant and none of them raised their hands. Zero. So we had a chat about how Feminism is the belief that men and women are equal. We talked about patriarchy, another term they had never heard, and then we watched two videos- Things That Girls Hear that men do not and Things That Boys and Men Hear that are bad for everyone.

We talked about how Feminism is not a dirty or aggressive word for radicals, but a word that will help both men and women free themselves from the patriarchal power structures that we live under. It was powerful and intense.

It made me love my job and the choices I have made. We are now brainstorming a campaign that will help educate our school population on the word feminism and thinking about making our own video using terms that boys and girls hear that offend their gender sensibilities.

It was a good meeting. They are an amazing group of young people.


We continued the conversation at dinner and Kaia said, “What’s the big deal I am a feminist and I hate Barbie.”

Which was funny at first, but then made me think how strange it is when children mimic their parents’ political beliefs. I know I did it as a kid. You could find eleven year old me railing against the evils of capitalism at the playground, after an intense political discussion night with my dad and his friends.

But don’t we frown on that behaviour when we see the children of people with our opposing beliefs do the same. I know I alway grimace when I hear really young children talk about the bible.

Our conversation has me thinking about the difference between indoctrination and education. How balanced of a story do we give our kids as parents? As teachers?  I didn’t come to any conclusions, as it was only a few hour ago. Something to mull over.


We got a Mega Boom speaker today which is great. We haven’t had a household stereo system for ever. So now, we can blast some music throughout the day. I’m pretty excited about that.


Lesson Learned:

  • Don’t piss off the Mormons. 
  • Dreams produce fear induced adrenaline. 
  • Don’t take for granted what the kids you teach know or don’t know.
  • Be careful not to indoctrinate your children with your beliefs no matter how right or just they feel.  


  1. What is the craziest dream you have had lately? 
  2. What’s a lesson you think young people learn these days? 
  3. What are some values and beliefs you want your kids to understand? 
  4. Thoughts in the education verses indoctrination debate. 

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