Thursday, July 11, 2019

What if we just disrupted a bit...

OK, so I might ruffle a few feathers, but when has that stopped me before, right?
This is a rewrite of a post I wrote about a year and a half ago.
Right now, here we are. In the moment. Doing. Moving. Breathing. Living our life.
And then it happens. Something we don’t want, but now, we have come to expect.
A tragedy.
Lives are disrupted, lost and memorialized. We wonder why. What happened? What could have gone wrong? When will things change and improve?
Wake up - it hits us. The Anger. The Rage. The Pain. The Fear. The Anguish. And The Hate.
When will it end? Why can’t we get this thing called Kindness, Compassion, Love, Empathy and Togetherness right?
It seems so simple; we teach our Preschool and Elementary kiddos to be kind, use nice words, actions and gestures. “Think of others first” we say to them; because we know that they are young, malleable, impressionable and sweet. Hoping it
will stick to them like glue. We KNOW they can do better than we did.
We KNOW they can help us to improve our world. We KNOW they are the only ones we can count on to be what our society isn't.
But, for some reason, it isn’t working. It is broken, and so are we.
Why can’t we get this right? The hatred. The fury. The disgust. The judgement. The ignorance. The inability to reflect, stop and think.
Not a day goes by in this amazing country that we don’t relive Normandy, Vietnam, Selma, 9/11, Holocaust, Columbine, Boston Marathon Bombings; need I list more? No. We know them all, or at least most of them. They just repeat with a theme; Racism, Hate, War, Mental Illness,
Misunderstandings, Ignorance and Lack of Empathy.
Who are we, my friends? Have we lost our minds? Why can’t we get it right? We have a leader in Washington DC that thought draining the swamp meant to eradicate all the good, treat others with disgust and hatred and words that cannot be forgotten. We have members of Congress that can’t see past the money
they get from the NRA, Big Pharma, Exxon-Mobil, AT&T and
so many more; that they can’t see straight.
In 2018, we had more hate groups in the US now, than ever (1020 and growing -see map HERE ). What is wrong with us? Why is #Kindness so difficult? The movie Wonder come out with the #ChooseKind movement. I just wrote my first picture book called One Drop of Kindness. Check it out. But, Why. Is. KINDNESS So. Hard?
The Olympics come and go; we bond together in our love of sports.
Our Women's National Soccer Team just crushed the World. Americans unite. But, you Know what? Each amazing female
athlete that is on the team will receive roughly $260K. Not a bad amount you may think ...until you realize that the Men's Team would have each gotten about $1.1M. Yes, that's correct. The women get about 24% of what their male counterparts! WTF?!

What if we decided to be kind AND equitable everyday?

What if our students had the consistent message that they count and matter?
What if all Americans could have affordable Health Care, both Physical and Mental
when they needed it?
What if we only used guns for protection, hunting and sporting, and like many of
the safest countries in the world, we did not allow semi and automatic weapons?
What if All students had a say in his/her education?
What if all Black, White, Brown, and every other color person actually got along
because they cared about each other?
What if the President and Congress actually worked for the People of the
United States? Not for Special Interests? or Himself and his ego?
What if we all just did better. A little at a time. Every day.

Let's just disrupt the status quo. Today. Right Now.
Do it with kindness, intention, betterment of others and to bring equity to our world. One Ripple at a time.

I’m willing to try. Are you?

Monday, July 1, 2019

We Made it! #KubiakKindnessCrew #OneDropOfKindness

1,712 miles driven.
18 Copies of One Drop of Kindness given away.
100's of ODK Stickers passed around.
Thousands of doors opened and being held for others.
Unknown amounts of trash picked up.
Water, Happy Meals, and other snacks purchased for those without.
Countless smiles, hello's, thank you's and general pleasantries.

Those are just some stats.
The magic within the trip was exponentially greater. The family bonding? Unfathomable.
Team Kube set off for 3 National Parks and ventured through some of most ghostly parts of the Western United States. Highway 50, known at the "Loneliest Road in America" and home to the Pony Express was our beginning. We played car games, sang songs, laughed at random jokes, listened to podcasts, had temper tantrums, ate the greasiest food I've ever seen and yes, we even slept a bit.

The purpose of our journey was several-fold. First, my kids hadn't seen many National Parks, something I had done a lot of as a child. Second, we needed to bond and spend some disconnected time together as a family - we don't get a lot of it during the school year. Lastly, as part of the mission of my new book, One Drop of Kindness, and our family motto, we wanted to give back and perform as many "Random Drops of Kindness" as we could.

The four of us called the trip a success. Yes, there was still some thermo-nuclear meltdowns, arguments, rough patches and hiccups, Team Kube laughed, played, loved and truly created memories.
Canyoneering in narrow sandstone canyons, zip-lining, horseback, long hikes overlooking some of nature's most prestigious works of wonder (Zion, Bryce and Great Basin), Spelunked, swam, campfired, fought gnats, Smore'd, conversed, played cards, unplugged, and most importantly; just plain had time together as a family.

We ended our journey with a stop in SinCity, or Las Vegas to some of you. This was a first for our kids...eyes WIDE open, wondering, smelling the pot waft throughout our stroll, running into David Copperfield on the street, the overcrowded and supersonic drunkenness of the hotel"lazy river", Neon lights, sounds, and incredible humans. On this stop we had the pleasure of meeting Jim, our friendly Hotel Engineer. I posted about Jim earlier on Twitter, as I believed his story was amazing.

A grandfather of 4, Jim is a pleasant, kind and very overworked hotel employee. When we checked in, the kids noticed our television wasn't working. 3 calls and 4 hours later, Jim showed up.
Ever so apologetic, we told him not to worry, and realized that he must have been very busy. Almost taken aback, Jim said, "people normally don't react that way, they are kind, in general, thank you". I almost wept. How could someone get angry at a per
son who is doing his best, and trying to keep up? Entitlement perhaps? yes, no doubt.
We talked, laughed, joked, and told stories. As Jim was finished, I asked if I could give him a copy of my book - with a huge smile, Jim replied "YES!".

I often struggle with balance, parenting, husbanding and self care. But I never neglect a chance to reflect. This trip brought many things into perspective for me. Family First. Serve others whenever possible (it's always possible). Quit comparing myself to others (24 hour challenge for me). And, most importantly, we only get one ride on this terrific voyage called life. My kids are 10 and 14 and it seems as life has been put on fast forward x10.
If you've read this far and haven't fallen asleep, please take this into consideration:
Serve others, always.
Enjoy your time with family and friends.
Be kind to yourself.
Create Drops and Ripples of Kindness, I guarantee they'll spread far and come back to you.

#OneDropOfKindness #PushBoundEDU #CompelledTribe #JoyfulLeaders