Archive for January 30th, 2009

When we were kids, running around in circles was something fun to do. We would run and run until we got so dizzy we would fall down. And sometimes we would just run for no reason at all, just because we could. I often think about the simplicity of youth, when I see a child running and smiling and laughing, or I see them playing army or cops and robbers, or any simple game like that. Games that took no real thought, games that just happened or just are. The laughter fills the air and the joy and simplicity of youth come flooding back to me, they fill my being with a longing to once again enjoy a simpler time.

I remember playing a game when I was a youth, my friend and I would pretend that when we climbed the fence in my back yard we were transported in to a different time, the past. Our youthful eyes would see things not as they were, but as they should have been. The vividness of it was real, the imagination took over and our city block was no longer in 1970’s but was transported back to the old west, or even to pre-historic times. We would crawl through the jungles and run from the bad guys and when we had finished our mission, or need to use the bathroom, we would jump the fence to be transported back to our time, knowing that at anytime we could reenter our own little world by simple jumping the fence in my back yard. I can still see us playing this game, can still feel the summer sun on my face and smell the smells of the city. It was a magical time; it was a time of wonder and amazement. It was our time.

So what brings up the trip down memory lane, why do I bother you with images from my youth? Basically to illustrate one simple point, as we grow we seem to lose the ability to allow ourselves the freedom to enjoy life. We place demands on ourselves, we allow society to dictate our actions. The simplicity of youth is lost on the complexity of adulthood. How sad!

I attended a seminar on stress, the speaker had written a book that basically said laugh it off, a thought process I agree with 100%. But one of the things the truly got my attention was how she dealt with rush hour traffic. Her ride home would sometimes take 2 hours, she lived in California, so the drive was long and the heat could get to you. Her way of dealing with the honking of horns, was to take out a bottle of bubbles, and blow bubbles out her window. Imagine seeing a 40 year old woman blowing bubbles out her car window. I can hear the comments now, “Look at the grown woman” “How childish” “What the @#$%@” and so on.

But that was the point, what good does it do her to honk her horn, cuss others out or get all frustrated and mad, why not blow bubbles, it does as much good as anything else. And besides, it made some of the other drives smile a little, and maybe transported them back to their childhood, if only for a moment. I was amazed and loved the idea, now in truth I have never done that, but living in the Detroit area, I have no need to, horns are not honked here too often and I am never in a traffic jam for 2 hours. But I still love the idea, and it makes me smile when I remember it.

I think we all need to learn how to transport ourselves back to the simplicity of our youth, we need to remember that life can be simple, and that sometimes we just need to run for the simple reason that we can.

As for me, I think I will head out to my back yard and jump the fence to be transported back the my youth for a little time, don’t worry, I won’t stay long, I am sure I will need a restroom break and will have to jump back before long.


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