Daily Archives: December 25, 2008

Marley & Me, bring the tissues!

I LOVED this movie!

I knew I was going to the movies on Christmas Day.  My daughter is with her Dad, and it’s a little tradition when I spend time alone.  So many movies looked good, 7 pounds with Will Smith, and Brad Pitt in Benjamin Button.

But I saw Jennifer Aniston on Oprah, and she didn’t get sour about her and Brad Pitt having a movie released on the same day.  She didn’t lie either, she just acknowledged it.  I’ve used a thought again and again, to help me.  I rationalize my love life sometimes, with “even Jennifer Aniston can get left” so even if I was hotter, thinner, prettier . . . I still might be alone.

So . . . in the back of my feminist mind I decided I would go see Marley & Me before Benjamin Button.  I actually wanted to go to two movies today.  I know it’s wierd, but I’m alone, so I can.  I wanted to have the least amount of time between the two shows.  I looked at two different places to go.  What was making sense was to go to Brad’s movie earlier.  But I had decided to spend my money first on Jennifer.  As if it really makes a big personal impact to EITHER one.  I couldn’t leave the feminist value behind!  I couldn’t go to Will Smith first either.

So off to Marley & Me.  I was late and I entered the packed, dark  theatre during previews.  I had to grab a seat in row 2.  The movie was larger than life in row two.dd-marley25_ph_0499578038_part1 

Oh did it get my heart!  I LOVED IT.  In one scene Owen Wilson’s character John Grogan is defending his marriage troubles and says “Mend it.  Don’t end it.”  What great advice for a marriage.  I say that is a little RJ in action!


Filed under Belonging, Kris Miner, Relationships, Restorative Justice

Valuing a relationship to your own learning.

Restorative Justice is an evolving field.  I believe that we as practitioners/advocates, scholars have a responsibility to the field.  This responsibility takes many forms.  Here’s my list.

1.) To ourselves, to use the principles in both personal and professional.  Walk the Talk.  Living congruently.  Know yourself, and what better way that with addressing your own harms & needs or focusing on peace & belonging.

2.) To core philosophies. The key principles of RJ are consistent – harms, needs, obligations, engagement.  Inclusive process focusing on making things right.

3.) To others. When we see that our practice is rewarding and helpful, it’s important to circulate what works.  A social responsibility to advance the field and contribute good.

4.) To the greater good. I believe the institutions of schools & criminal courtrooms, need to change.  As a society and system, we need to figure this out.  I want to help and will contribute.

So holding these responsibilities – means holding a relationship to your own learning.  You learn how to care and grow yourself.  You learn more about restorative justice, you speak and carry yourself in a manner that others find you credible.  They want to know your story.  You learn how to create and influence social change.  Here’s a few examples of what I’ve been doing.

“Restorative Justice, an old concept, new again”  Ted Wachtel, IIRP.  I am ready to start reading Return to the Teachings by Ruppert Ross.  An RJ classic and must read for practitioners, so I’ve heard, I’ll keep you updated.

My learning about myself and relationships, I dug around the Internet and found this gem:  Psychology Today Article.  I printed it off and plan to do some journal writing and reflection on several of the points.

In promoting and advocating for bigger system change, the relationship to our learning is this.  What Works?  In a former work enviornment, I pushed and advocated for a less punitive, less formal style of child protection work.  It caused some huge disruptions & ripples.

I’ve learned, that taking an approach that is inclusive and relationship based works much better.

So the title of the post – a relationship to your own learning.  I encourage teachers to teach young people to develop this.  It creates lifelong learner, and it shifts responsibility from the teacher to the students.  The book Compassionate Classroom explains this.

So how is your relationship to your own learning.  How do you learn.  Are you a thinker, while you do physical work?  Are you a reader who needs articles & stories?  Do you need metaphors to understand and learn?  Conversation with someone else, is talking your best learning mechanism?

That’s the great thing about relationships, they are fluid, and change over time.

All the best in your learning!



Filed under Kris Miner, non-profit management, personal growth, Practitioner Skills, Relationships, Responses from participants, Restorative Justice, RJ Resources, SCVRJP, Teaching RJ