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Mindful : August 2019
“WITHIN 15 SECONDS, EVERY KID IN THE ROOM WAS STILL. I THOUGHT, ARE THEY MESSING WITH ME?” How did that first session go? I’d been practicing for two or three weeks. I had no idea how to lead meditation, but I kept it simple—two minutes. If you don’t like it, I said, I won’t force it on you, but I’ve found something that’s helped me, and maybe it will help you. We’re going to focus on sounds and on breathing. They looked at me: What? We thought you were the cool teacher! Within 15 seconds, every kid in the room was still. Eyes closed. No fidgeting. I saw their facial muscles and their bodies dropping into relaxation. After two min- utes, when I rang the bell, no one moved. Twenty-five kids! I thought, Are they messing with me? After a few minutes, they began to open their eyes, and then, they shared: I felt relaxed. It was like floating in the clouds. And you’ve never wavered in your own practice? It’s funny. I’m actually more disciplined about practicing mindfulness than I am about flossing my teeth. I haven’t missed one day of practicing or sitting in stillness. ● August 2019 mindful 37 walk the talk PHOTOGRAPHBYMCNAIREVANS