Thursday, February 10, 2011

When I Was A Child So Long Ago

When I was young I loved to go outside and play in the snow with my friends. We would stay out for hours building forts, having snowball fights and sledding. It didn't matter to us how long we were outside or how cold we got. All that mattered was how much fun we were having. We would come inside and get something to eat, more fuel for our body, so that we could go back outside as fast as possible and spend even more time having our fun.

Now I no longer have the shaded vision of youth. I am older and it seems more susceptible to colds and the flu. Where i once saw fun and games I now see work. It's not easy shoveling a long, double driveway while having the wind whip the snow that you just threw from your shovel back in your face. Busting your back to clear everything off and then going to work for over eight hours. It's not fun at all.

Sometime I lament that I have lost my childhood innocence, my joy at seeing things through those eyes. Everything always seemed so new and exciting, it seemed like you would never grow up and always would have fun. There were no thoughts of growing up, the stress of work or school doesn't register, the pressure of making a monthly mortgage payment does not exist nor does the idea that the person you love doesn't always love you back or forever. It's all about enjoying life.

Then you get a little older and life starts to show you what the future is like. You see families fall apart and all the pressures that you were so completely unaware of slowly creep their way into your existence. Little by little until suddenly you've forgotten what it was like to be young and innocent. If you're lucky you can have a child or perhaps have a sibling who does and you can see that child experiencing all the joy of discovering life and then maybe, you get to re-live a little bit of what it was like when you were that age.

The thought that I keep with me is that I am thankful that I did have that time when I was young because not every child in the world is that blessed. Some of them have to grow up very quickly and find out all too soon what life has prepared for them and it's usually not pleasant. At the time we may not realize how good we have it but there is always somebody else who has it worse than you do. Always. All I want to do now is delay just a little how long it takes for my son to lose his innocence so that he can just be a kid. Not too long, but definitely not too short either.

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