Zero Tolerance


I do so declare, JMJ. Written, and signed after a test. I do so declare, to Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I did not cheat on the test. Written and signed, years ago, in elementary school. It meant honesty, reputation, with a zero tolerance accountability.
Today, I do so declare to my body, mind and spirit, to be true to me. True, to Spirit, the source of joy, wonder, forgiveness and sacredness of my being.

If you want to blame me for every red light that gets in your way ~ I do so declare zero tolerance.
If you expect me be responsible for your social aspirations ~ I do so declare zero tolerance.
If you charge exorbitant prices and expect me to be loyal to your extravagance ~ I do so declare zero tolerance.
If you expect me to look like Barbie, work like Rosie the Riveter and appear in the bedroom like a lingerie commercial ~ I do so declare zero tolerance.
If you expect me to believe in the commercially spouted news ~ I do so declare zero tolerance.

After all, life, whether you consider it one long test, an adventure, or opportunity, the promises we make to ourselves, for ourselves, are the promises we are held accountable for.



The words echo back to me, as if the moisture in my mouth won’t let them go. My heart beat is louder than the echo, recognizing ‘I’ in the pronunciation ‘you’. The responsibility of my claims, judgment, compliments, forgiveness, fills my lungs as the vibrations of meaning enters my breath in a life changing awareness.

“You are not working hard enough” as I feel the result of my inability to rest and care for myself.

“You are so childish” has the potential to remind me of the joy of innocent playfulness rather than adult condemnation.

“I appreciate your honesty” honors a desire for trust.

“I feel safe with you” recognizes respect for self and others.

Listening to my own words, feeling the echo of their meaning, is like hearing the storm swirling around while staying in the calm center.

caught between two worlds

He sat on the bench, intently looking at his feet.  Locals call them tennis shoes. I’ve always known them as sneakers. The difference between us is greater than the terms we use to describe footwear. Our similarities tie us together like shoelaces.

Is his downward glance due to embarrassment, irritation, or disassociation? Three adults surround this young man, this Middle School student. One in a tie, one jeans, one in a skirt. He could easily identify the triangular shape around him, but possibly not the depth of our ability to believe in him.

My magic wand is simply words and actions. My gift to him is the same to all. I share my wish with him.

“If I could give you a gift, I would give you the ability to wake up every day, to walk out of your house, knowing who you are, respecting yourself so much that no one, no thing, could distract you from being the person you want and choose to be.”

Three is a magic number in mythology and spirituality. This young man, with potential locked between the worlds of elementary and high school, between childhood and manhood. Looking as his feet, surrounded by three, he lifts his head.