Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Power of Connection

Connect (verb used with an object)

  •  to join, link, or fasten together; unite or bind: to connect the two cities by a bridge; Communication satellites connect the local stations into a network.
  •  to establish communication between; put in communication: Operator, will you please connect me with Mr. Jones?
  •  to have as an accompanying or associated feature: pleasures connected with music.
  •  to cause to be associated, as in a personal or business relationship: to connect oneself with a group of like-minded persons;   Our bank is connected with major foreign banks.
  •  to associate mentally or emotionally: She connects all telegrams with bad news.

Connection is a reoccurring theme in my life.  This morning I had a connection with a friend as we exchanged words through an email.  The connection was a simple one really.  He was asking me a question and was giving me some information.  Very innocuous on many levels.  But his words connected with me and led me to my own writing which took me to a completely different understanding about myself and my connection to the world.  A very innocent connection that led to another and another and another.  Innocence to profundity.  Connection is like that.   Connection can heal.  Connection can bring us to deeper understandings about our lives and our world.   Connection can bring us to a place of gratitude.

I am turning 60 this week.  My friend’s question connected me to him and connected me to myself.  And took me to a different place.  His question took me to thoughts about this upcoming milestone.  I will be celebrating my daughter’s wedding shower on my birthday this year.  We will be traveling 500 miles to the town where my family lives and my sister will be giving her a shower.  My sisters, mom, and Cincinnati friends will be celebrating her upcoming wedding day.  And a few of my oldest friends will be taking me out to dinner to celebrate me.  To connect with me.

I haven’t been one really, to celebrate myself.  And as I get closer to the day when I will connect to turning 60, I have become more inclined to celebrate me.  I really have been thinking that I want to honor my "being" in this world for 60 years.   To honor my connection to the world.  To celebrate my body for serving me well for 60 years; for housing my spirit and for allowing me to inhabit this lovely world.  To celebrate my wisdom that has come from my life’s experiences and has allowed me to connect to so many in really wonderful ways.  To celebrate my heart that has allowed me to love deeply in the good times and the bad.  To celebrate my spirit that has allowed me to know goodness along the pathway of my journey in life. These are all gifts and I am very grateful.  Connection leads to gratitude.  

My friend’s words led me to my writing which led me to deeper connection and understanding.  Writing does that.  Writing connects the dots.  How do we, as teachers, allow space for this to happen for our students?  How can I connect to a student today?  How can our connection be a conduit for deeper discovery?  This is why I teach writing.  This is why I teach children.

Connection…from a simple question to a deeper understanding.  Connection is like that.  Connection…that’s what it is all about.


  1. Happy, happy birthday week! Celebrating the life and connections from all those years of living is a great way to celebrate you. Many joyous events are about to happen and there are so many more ahead. This year i also reach sixty, you have pushed me to think of my connections too.

  2. Yay for connections, and yay for 60! Happy birthday!!!

  3. So true, writing connects the dots...I hope you have a wonderful celebration, just for you...for your birthday!

  4. Have a wonderful birthday week, and celebration with your daughter and friends, too, Deborah. What a terrific week you have ahead. So glad you shared with us, too, connecting...

  5. Happy Birthday!!!! I l love the way you explain these connections. You are giving me an idea of a future post as I am turning 50 later this month. One line that really stayed with me from your post is: "Connection leads to gratitude." I will have think on that phrase much more. Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us.

  6. First and foremost - happy birthday! Secondly, you have added so many layers to the word connection. This is a post I need to go back and read closely to make my own connections to your words. Love this!

  7. Happy happy almost birthday, Deb! I am so grateful to be connected to you...
    Enjoy the celebrations - and celebrate you.

  8. Have a wonderful birthday week and enjoy all the connections you'll be making with family and friends. Your post is leading me to think more about connections. Writing connects the dots - I like that! Wonder if my students feel the same way. How do I help them understand that writing leads to deeper connection and understanding... hmmm.