Life is so different when you’re a kid. We were sitting on wooden bleachers at a race track a few months ago, watching the cars make passes and chatting, and my little guy got a bit gruff suddenly. Thinking we were having a great time and not understanding the change in attitude, I asked “what’s wrong?” Any mom knows, that’s a loaded question. In his best ‘do I really have to explain this to you’ voice, he said “don’t you see what’s down there?”, pointing to the dirty mess under the bleachers. I looked down and saw rocks, dirt, and trash. Then it hit me, I was looking at the ground beneath out feet with adult eyes. He was using that incredible kid-vision, the kind that see’s childhood adventure.
“I’m sorry we didn’t bring your tractors. Next time we’ll be sure to pack a few.” You’d better believe that he will remember that promise. While I saw a dirty mess under our feet, his 6 year old eyes saw a quarry full of dirt to dig and rocks to haul, endless possibility, childhood adventure. Wouldn’t it be amazing if we all saw things like that?
My job as “mom” is to nourish his childhood adventures, to let him see the world through his eyes for as long as possible. Sometimes I need help. Sometimes I need a lot of help. At the end of the day, when we’ve all had all the school and work we can handle yet there’s still more to do, I feel good about sending him to the pantry to grab a Nesquik to tide him over until dinner. It’s full of protein, potassium and calcium, and as an added bonus, I’ll never hear him complain about a snack that’s chocolate!
When we go to sleep, be that in a bed with our spouse/significant other or while being used as a pillow for our favorite furry friend, our dreams are our adventures. Our eyes see things they don’t see when we’re awake. As adults, it would be amazing if we could see more of life as a childhood adventure – like our kids. Maybe the secret is in the chocolate.