July 31, 2022
This week I am thrilled to feature our dear colleague, Marielle Sestier. Marielle is a French and Mexican woman committed to a profound social change rooted in goodness and love. Mother of two children, and currently living in Colombia. She is co-founder of LifeWays America Latina, an organization providing the offering of LifeWays North America in Spanish.
Stories are one of her passions. She loves reading, writing, telling, living stories. One touching story occurred a couple of years ago. She had received a book of Susan Perrow’s and found it to be a transformative gift. She dreamt of meeting Perrow, and was very lucky that it did happen! Last year, she even organized a training with her. Marielle says this experience is still growing strongly within. “Stories are a powerful and magical world, in which my heart and soul feel “home” and I am committed to promote and transmit their benefits.”
Since sometime in childhood I have had an insatiable interest in stories from around the world. I have relished in the richness of our human diversity, and longed to vicariously experience the oneness of the human experience that underlies our superficial differences.
For children, sharing stories of people with multifarious experiences and lives connects them to the world at large in a naturally implicit fashion. It is not the same as telling them we don’t discriminate or we all love each other. It goes deeper than that, and instead of feeding their intellect, draws the experience into their soul where human connections are strongly rooted. Children learn through doing and, gradually, through story, where they receive and develop an inner picture of another’s doing.
That’s why today, I am very excited to share with our Spanish-speaking friends a new source for stories, El Vuelo de la Cometa: Un Colectivo de Cuentos para Nutrir el Alma! This collective is particularly special for two reasons. First and foremost, it was created by our sister organization, LifeWays America Latina! Secondly, the stories are told by friends living all across Latin America today. In listening and sharing them with our children, they are offered the opportunity to form those deep human connections. And, I believe, when we can say these are stories from friends living today, we breathe a different gesture into them that gives an immediate message that we can be friends with people everywhere and that people from all over the world are inherently Good.
The story of how it began:
From our friend Marielle Sestier,
“I have heard for a while about podcasts but had never explored that tool. In January, I decided to listen to the wonderful and inspirational podcasts of Chineylu Kunz, We Nurture and Stories for Children. A door of wonder, knowledge, and gratitude opened. Chineylu´s content was so easily accessible through that channel, it literally changed my life. While listening to those beautiful stories for children something deep in my heart and soul moved.
We had to have something similar available in Spanish, and so, a journey of hard work began. In June our hard work culminated in the launch of “El vuelo de la cometa: un colectivo de cuentos para nutrir el alma, ”The flying kite: A collective of stories to nurture the soul.”
The project has had a warm welcome, our heart fills with love and gratitude when we receive messages from our audience stating how useful this tool is or how children (and adults) enjoy them. Imagining those small ears listening to our stories is such a strong drive.
We created this podcast with many purposes, one of our intentions is to build bridges between Spanish speaking communities. We invited authors, storytellers, and story lovers around the globe to jump into our “stories collective”. Many people have heard the call and connected. Mostly women from Guatemala, Mexico, Colombia, Chile, Peru, Argentina, Ecuador, Spain. We have already received precious jewels such as legends and traditional stories, including a song in the native Maya dialect, and a song in Guarani, the language of the Guarani indigenous peoples of South America.
I would like to thank two wonderful Waldorf teachers who have been deeply involved in this dream, sharing their stories, their voice, time, love, and full commitment: Gaby Hyddle from Guatemala and Zury Hernandez from Mexico.
We will soon be able to share stories based in goodness and love with different accents, culture, traditions… I feel a powerful golden string traveling around the globe, connecting us through the magical world of stories, nurturing our minds, hearts, and souls.”
To explore what El Vuelo de la Cometa offers, you can access their main page here. I also recommend listening to their introductory episode below (embedding below), and subscribing to the podcast through Spotify.
P.S. I am far from fluent in Spanish, but little by little as it fits into my busy days, I have been studying it. Listening to El Vuelo de la Cometa has now become part of my practice. I listen to it in the car, where I squeeze in most of my podcast listening, and share it with my 8 year old. As Marielle and I were collaborating on this article I had to share with her, and now with you, that listening to El Vuelo de Cometa has been such a touching experience. I catch myself understanding words or phrases here and there, but I am truly captivated by the beautiful melodies and moods of the languages and stories. I imagine even just this is deeply nourishing.