I’m back in the saddle following the birth of our second baby girl. Each paternity leave has been a surreal headspace - emotionally charged, foggily under-slept and over-caffeinated, mixed with an unusual amount of time to read, think, and dream.
I’ve found myself fixated on the future and the type of world we want to create for our children, and their children. It’s an especially poignant subject. I want this sweet, innocent little spirit to know the best of what her human experience has to offer, and yet I feel the tug of an unfortunate truth: there are so many forces that would limit her from flourishing, many of which she’ll be confronted with early in life if she enters the K-12 industrial complex.
I long for her to fully embrace her imaginative powers, romping outside with ample space to play and freedom to explore.
I hope she can be truly healthy, eating nutrient-dense food and getting plenty of sleep, sunshine, and laughter.
And I want her to step into her power, cultivating virtues as she pursues truth and her right way of living.
All of those and more feel like they should be attainable and the guideposts towards which we orient our parenting and educational decisions. So why isn’t that the reality for more kids?
Why is it that recess is dwindling while screen time is exploding?
Why does the bus pick up middle schoolers on my street at 6:40am when their circadian rhythms are on a later schedule than adults?
Why were there 77 million prescriptions written for ADHD stimulant medications in 2021, while youth sports participation is down?
Why does the average American kid eat 65 pounds of added sugar each year, and over 40% of youth have a chronic illness?
I didn’t even mention school shootings.
Most of all - why do we accept this? I read about how technological innovation makes this the best time in human history to be alive, and we have unprecedented resources at our disposal. So why isn’t there a more concerted effort to promote human flourishing - starting with the youth who will be our future leaders?
It shouldn’t be counter-cultural to be healthy, playful, and joyous. I want to be a part of a movement where our businesses and organizations help people thrive. It’s the spirit behind Daymaker and the resources we share with children who would otherwise lack access.
I do believe there’s a more beautiful world possible if we marshal our resources towards creating it. It’s what I want for me, for my girls, and for you and yours. Let’s chase that future.