CREDOS: Childhood — II

While we as adults are so busy chasing the almighty dollar, we’ve forgotten that simple pleasures we enjoyed as children are free, right in our own backyards, there for the taking.

One lazy afternoon while watching my children play, I started thinking about how differently the world looks through the eyes of an adult with so many responsibilities. All at once I realised that while I was trying to raise them to be perfect mini-adults who would then become perfect full-grown adults, my oldest child at eleven was essentially still that - a child!

I felt my stomach drop as I recalled reprimanding them over and over about this and that and giving lectures on appropriate behaviour. I cringed inwardly as I realised with clarity that I’ve essentially been telling them that it’s wrong to behave as the children they are. My five-year-old chose that moment to look over and give me a wave. She yelled, “Mom, watch!” and jumped off the swing seat in mid-swing and flew through the air. I held my breath until she landed in the sandbox without a major injury.

My first response was a barrage of admonishments about how she could have broken a leg or landed on one of her younger sisters, but just as I started to yell, I shocked myself by responding with, “Wow!” And I gave her a thumbs-up. Suddenly I felt a pang of longing for the days of my own youth. The days when I, too, could romp and play without a care for the increasing cost-of-living, budgets and mortgages. —