A friend posted this photo on Facebook last night. I was mesmerized by it. My curiosity to know what the two little girls are looking at is akin to what they must have been feeling when the photograph was made. Apparently they are in a museum’s modern art gallery, but it’s not what’s hanging on the walls that is fascinating the young ones. It’s in solving the mystery of what’s behind the grate.
Unadulterated awe about the mystery of simple things is weak by the time adulthood arrives. Grownups know all too well about what works and what doesn’t, with “too well” being the operative words. In “being big” most forget how to try the impossible and how to absolutely believe in things based only on faith like the Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus. We lose the majority of our curiosity and forget how to effectively waste time playing.
In a “Huffington Post” article I found suggestions of “10 Ways to Be a Kid Again”
1. Make a silly face at a stranger. Everyone likes a silly face. I bet you’ll crack someone up.
2. Eat ice cream for dinner. The fun part about being an adult is you can do what you want when you want. We are already aware of our immense responsibilities so for one night let it go.
3. Go to bed early. Some kids hate bedtime, but once they’re down they sleep like rocks. Give yourself a ridiculously early bedtime one night this week.
4. Hang out with your friends. Kids have play dates. Call a pal and actually get together and do something fun like go to the park and play Frisbee.
5. Color or draw something. Coloring brings back memories for most of us. Dig up some of your old coloring books if you can.
6. Try to say the alphabet backwards. Kids are great at crazy tasks. They try with all their might. See how fast you can say it.
7. Have a race. The next time you are walking with a friend race them to the corner. It’s fun to see other adults reacting to spontaneous racing.
8. Skip down the hallways at work. Mid-day sluggish getting to you? Skip to your meeting and you’ll probably brighten up the whole office.
9. Wear what you want. Kids come up with interesting outfits when they’re allowed by their parents to dress themselves. Come up with your own interesting outfit one day this week.
10. Try a handstand. Kids do yoga poses naturally, just for fun. Try a handstand and don’t worry about falling over.
Yes, some of the ten things are not that practical, but who cares. No grades will be given on how well done each one is. I wonder if I’ll break something trying the tenth one; a hand stand! Yet, the child in me wants to attempt it and is already badgering me “Come on Dad, can we try? Please, can we try? Please! Please! You can do it. I’ll show you how.”
I am grateful that voice of the seven-year old boy in me is no longer silent. He spent many years unnoticed and unwanted, but in my recovery, he is recovering too. I love my rediscovered whimsical childish side. Writing that makes me want to buy some finger paint. I don’t think I’ve done that since I was eight!
When we are children we seldom think of the future.
This innocence leaves us free to enjoy ourselves
as few adults can. The day we fret about the future
is the day we leave our childhood behind.