Friday, March 22, 2019
See Like A Child
Being a child is a thrilling experience. Children automatically know how to fully enjoy the moment. You can see joy, puzzlement, curiosity, fright, sadness, and glee on their faces because they have not yet learned to keep their emotions to themselves.
Of course a trip to the amusement park or a memorable vacation is thrilling to all of us. But children do not need extreme stimulation. I remember some of the things I liked as a child and they are the simplest things. As adults we might not give them another thought.
I love the rain. My parents let us play in the rain unless conditions such as lightning made it dangerous. I still go out and dance in the rain. For some reason it seems to be a basic and freeing thing to do.
One time we had a huge downpour of rain. Of course we had to stay inside because we could not even see the street from the window.
When it became safe to go outside we had a swimming pool! The very shallow ditch which was not more than a slightly lower section between the road and the yard held water. The reason it was so deep was that the water ran halfway up into the yard and halfway out into the road. We had a great time splashing around as the water slowly receded.
Bugs and spiders hold a special fascination for children. I think it may be because they move. Some have good colors.
We collected them. Our way of collecting little critters was to catch them in a mason jar and close the lid. After we began to tire of them (usually a matter of minutes) we set them free and went on to capture another critter.
My best friend had gooseberry bushes at her house. My parents always had strawberries. As a family we went into the country to pick chokecherries for jelly. And there were wild berries to be found all over the place. And I will not even count my very absolute favorite mulberries.
It was always thrilling to pick berries. If they were something we could eat right on the spot so much the better.
Just running and playing are joys for children. One Easter we gathered at my son's house. We all took the eggs we had colored. I filled plastic eggs with goodies. My son had already hidden the ones he filled. When he finished hiding the ones I took there were hundreds of plastic eggs and dozens of colored eggs hidden in his yard.
We released the kids. They had so much fun running around filling their baskets with the treats. Then we went inside and had a scrumptious meal.
After the meal another son tossed a real egg at my grandson. My grandson tossed another back. The Easter egg fight was on! They were all splatting each other with eggs. The yard was covered with colorful bits of eggshell. And a tradition was launched.
But to watch a game of tag when the children do not realize you are watching makes you smile. They are so carefree.
Do you know what a thrill it is for a child to get a hug from a parent? For no reason other than the child just happened to be close? I remember those hugs. I hope my children remember the ones I gave them because I would notice how cute they were.
I constantly mention our family rides in the country. That is because they are some of my favorite times. A simple drive with no time constraints and people pointing out interesting things. For instance a squirrel running up a tree is interesting. A tree with an interesting shape is good. It is interesting to spot a scarecrow, a different kind of flower, chickens scratching around, a road sign that makes you laugh... you get the idea.
We usually lived near a creek. Wading in the creek is great fun. All that splashing and getting wet has other benefits. On a hot summer day it is the best way to cool off. Plus children who have been playing in cool water dry off and warm up a little. When that happens they feel cozy and will take a nice nap.
We also seemed to live near train tracks. Waving at the engineer and getting him to wave back was exhilarating. If he blew the horn... jackpot!
It takes so little to delight a child. I want to always be able to see the joy and wonder in my world too. I wish the same for you.