Live for today
Saleen Mitchell is a strong, outspoken, spiritual minded, single-mother of one. As an educator and mentor at Shotwell Middle School in Spring Texas, she spends most of her days catering to others. As the eldest child of four, it is increasingly natural for her to command this role. Earlier this spring she was awarded for having the most students in the entire AISD school district receive 43% passing on their STAAR exams. The AISD school district as a whole received 23% passing on their STAAR exam evaluations. She is currently up for the Assistant Principals position at said school and out of 173 applicants and four interviews, she is in the final five. However great these achievements might sound Saleen, attests it all (in her own words) “to prayer and her invaluable connection with humanity and God”.
Hailing from Kingston Jamaica, but growing up in the states, Saleen graduated with a B.S. from Old Dominion University and a Masters from Corinthian. She recalls the earliest memory of her incredible journey…
“I was about five years old and my mother and I were leaving Jamaica for a better life. She told me like a week prior that we would be going to New York to live with my grandfather. Anyways, as she’s packing up our bags I remember her looking over at me and saying, “take off your shoes”. They were my church shoes (which I only got to wear once a week) so I was kind of hesitant, but in Jamaican culture you know to do as you’re told immediately or else [she laughs]. I took off my shoes and watched my mother reach into her pocket and pull out a small roll of money. She crumpled it up and placed it in the bottom of my left shoe. She tells me, “put your shoes back on”. Now mind you, I’m five years old, I’ve just been taken out of school, and my mom and I are leaving our home in Kingston, Jamaica for New York City. Anyways, we get to the airport, go through customs and everything is fine. We board the plane and we take off. I remember looking out the window and seeing the mountains not understanding really what was going on. However, the mood on my mom’s face looked tense so I just layed back and went to sleep.
When we arrived in Miami we were one of the first passengers to reach customs. When we got there the man behind the screen started asking my mom a few questions. I remember her being a little nervous, so I just kept quiet. He asked her if she was carrying any money into the country and she said, “No”. I immediately looked to her and said, “but mama what about the money that you hid in my shoes”? She immediately looked at me with that menacing snarl as if to say, “shut up little girl!”At the time I had a pretty thick Jamaican patois. Fortunately, the man couldn’t understand what I was saying and looked at my mom, and asked “what did she say”? She quickly responded “oh, she’s just very thirsty and was wondering where she could get some water”. I can’t remember exactly, but I know she said something clever. Anyways, in the end he stamped our passports, took a good look at us, and finally let us through.” She concludes, “this was the first door that opened for me (literally). It’s how God planned my journey, and he has guided me since.”
Fitness is not only of the body but especially of the mind. Harnessing a powerful connection with your spirit and the universe can guide you to memories hidden deep in the hippocampus that you have either forgotten, or not visited because you have not meditated there. Saleen is a beautiful example of how training the spirit can allow you to access memories as Drake would say, are ‘So far gone‘. This memory of her’s stems from one incident in the entire year of 1978. It just goes to show how powerful not only a child’s mind is but your mind is.
Today is Saleen’s birthday so we would like to say happy birthday! Everyone here at Livsstil appreciates you and celebrates you!