#160: Learning From a Child's Exuberance
Sunday, December 06, 2009
When was the last time you watched a child play? Not to monitor them as a parent or as a babysitter, but simply to watch them and wonder where in the world they get their energy?
I was at my sister's late this morning as she babysat her five-year-old grandson, Evan. I looked forward to playing with him and doing stupid things and making up funny poems like we do when he and I are together. We played soccer in the hallway with a Nerf type of ball, then trucks and fire department, making sounds like sirens. All of the time with the trucks he, of course, pulled out every one he had there, not seeming to understand portioning them a few at a time.
But it was the same with the way he played -- full out. I finally got tired watching him go on and on like the Energizer Bunny, sat down and began wondering when we become stodgy and out-of-energy, one day vibrant and then tired and worn out.
I read many blogs here that say the writer wants to lose weight to be better able to play with their children and grandchildren. I know excess weight is part of it, perhaps a major part. But is there more, maybe adult responsibilities, that drains us of our child-like enthusiasm? Is it the worries of daily life?
Then the more important question hit me -- how do we get that child-like innocence back? By not worrying about embarrassing ourselves as we play with the little ones? By forgetting the "real" world for a short while and reclaiming our youthful innocence?
Whatever method we use, it seems important that we try to re-capture that child-like part of us that just wants to have a good time with such simple things as toy trucks or a ball, that we regain our sense of wonder at the world's treasures. When was the last time you enjoyed the breeze, instead of worrying about leaves blowing in the yard, or savoring a temperature change as part of the evolution of the seasons?
When was the last time you simply had fun?