“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” M. Twain
This past weekend, I had a chance to look at some old family photos when visiting my Mom and Dad in the Pittsburgh area. It was great to see what we all looked like back then and bask in our shared memories. As I was taking all this in, I began to wonder what my second grade self would think of the adult me. I'd hope that the energetic, imaginative, play all day outside tom-boy girl would not be disappointed with who I was - or worse yet, bored with who she saw. When I was little, the things that were the most important to me were: my family, playing, singing, playing, lunch with my Mom, playing, running around the yard with my dog, playing and well, more playing. I think I can see a pattern here.
Children have the wonderful ability to live in the moment, to experience sorrow and joy, express it and move on. Most likely they move on to more playing. I think there is some wisdom in this way of life. Children don't bottle up, hold back or wait for someday. Children live in today.
Living in the moment prevents us from trying to re-capture something that fits somewhere else. Living in the present frees us to see and be in what is immediately surrounding us.
This last weekend, there was so much I wanted to see and do, and after a few hours in I knew that all my plans were not going to happen. When I stopped pushing the envelope of two days to fit a weeks worth of adventuring in; I allowed some time to be present with my parents, drink some leisurely cups of tea, and have some adventures as well. Being in the present allowed me to look back to that picture of my second-grade self and say, "Yes, we would have a wonderful time together."
Let go of the things that keep you from being able to live and play in your present. This is exactly what second grade you would do - so you should too.
"To grow beyond self-rejection we must have the courage to listen to the voice calling us God's beloved sons and daughters, and the determination to always live our lives according to this truth." H. Nouwen - Bread for the journey