When she returned home to select clothes for her son’s burial, his mom, Scarlett, just happened to see his note, written in chalk in her young son’s first-grade scrawl.
“Nurturing Healing Love.”
Was he sending her a message? She acknowledged those words aren’t part of a 6-year-old’s typical vocabulary, so … where had they come from?
She had previously been convinced that she,”…would never forgive someone who hurt my family. NEVER.” But those words would stick with her everyday. They would change the way she looked at the world and change how she looked at forgiveness.
It even led her to a startling realization about her son’s murderer.
“I knew immediately, if Adam Lanza had felt nurturing, healing love, this would not have happened,” she says. And so she decided to do something to prevent another child from hurting the way he had growing up.
“I didn’t write this story. I didn’t start this story, but I can write the ending through forgiveness.”
She now runs the Jesse Lewis “Choose Love” Movement.
At the core of its curriculum, now 150,000 strong, in 47 states and 17 countries, are two seemingly unattainable attributes in the face of such a tragedy: love and forgiveness.
She combined these principles with a program that’s gaining a greater foothold in schools throughout the country: SEL, or social and emotional learning.
Its goal is to teach children from a young age the importance of controlling their often volatile emotions, how to be more empathetic and ultimately improving their relationships with others.
Studies have shown that learning these skills not only significantly increase both short- and long-term academic scores, but those students are also more emotionally stable and less prone to drug abuse.
To hear more about this heartfelt journey from hatred to compassion, and this mother’s incredible message about the power of love and forgiveness watch the video below.
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