I think one of the reasons I love being with kids is that I get to experience the world through their eyes. The burdened messiness of being an adult melts into the backgroung and for a second, I'm reliving the wonder...the wonder of life and being alive.
It really doesn't take much to impress the five-year-old I spend a lot of time with. It never has.
Through her awefilled eyes tonight I discovered the buzz of hummingbirds, their shyness, and the adventure of being still and quiet while waiting for them to come feed. We were rewarded plenty of times, even with three flying in at the same time....
...I discovered the sun set over the lake. We sat on the picnic table and she exclaimed at the colors as if we were watching a fireworks display. She popped up all of a sudden to teach me how to "arrrr" like a pirate. It took me a few tries before I got a satisfactory nod from her...
...I learned how to get comfy in the hammock with her nestled beside me. "Can I sleep here?" she wondered. Of course, I said.
"Do you want me to sing you a song?" She nodded.
"Which one do you want to hear?"
The one about Jesus, was her reply.
I can handle that...
...I remembered it's the simple things that matter like picking blackberries with hot pink sunglasses on and a small white bucket. What is it about being close to nature that makes us feel safe? She hasn't stopped talking about picking blackberries. When I pulled in the driveway this afternoon, she met me at the door, yelling, "HOLLY!! Let's go pick blackberries today. Right now!"
We're going again tomorrow.
I have held her hand through some of life's most important discoveries and in some cases, just been the reassuring figure in the background while she found the courage to walk barefoot in the grass for the first time, stand nose-to-nose with a two-day-old foal, ride in the wooden wagon and chase a puppy. Every time, I have experienced life again too.
She makes me remember the purity of being a kid, the joy in just being silly, and the safety of snuggling in the hammock watching the sun set.
Here's to the adventures yet to come.