Sunday, March 15, 2015

Through the eyes of a child

Young children view the world with wonder and delight. Everything they see, hear, smell, taste and touch is either an adventure or a mystery. Often both. They're curious about everything, they get excited about the smallest things (small to adults, that is) and they aren’t afraid to show their emotions: excitement, joy, fear, anger. They say what they mean and they mean what they say. No pettiness, no games, no hidden agendas. And, they don’t worry about would could happen. They aren’t limited by society’s expectations or restrictions, nor do they concern themselves with what others think of them. In other words, they’re excellent role models for us adults.

When I was a little girl, I loved to go out to play in the snow. I would bundle up in my warmest winter clothes to go sled riding, to make a snow man and/or to have a snowball fight with my little brother. And, I never wanted to go back inside when my mother called me. I didn’t feel the cold until, as I slipped out of my snow pants, coat, scarf, hat, mittens and boots – all of which were soaking wet – I stood warming my hands and feet by the radiator in the old house I grew up in. And, as a teenager, I looked forward to heading to a neighborhood lake, meeting my friends and putting on my skates. I was never the world’s best skater but I loved to glide across the ice.

But I grew up and, when I think of snow and ice now, I think of shoveling the driveway, scraping off my car and driving in slippery, sometimes hazardous conditions. I worry about slipping and falling and what that could involve. Because I’m an adult and I know what could happen. If I have an accident, I know what that will entail: dealing with insurance companies, car rentals, etc. So, I’ve come to see snow and ice as a bad thing and, although I do see the beauty in a freshly fallen snow, I no longer love and appreciate Winter. I’ve lost that.

But, even though I’m no longer a Winter person, I hope that I never, ever lose my ability to see the world the way a child does. Because I still marvel at the wonders of nature, I strive to be honest and direct (but tactful) and not to worry (too much) about what could happen. I'm curious about so many things and, I still see adventure and mystery everywhere. I hope I always do and I hope you do too.