On Thinking Like a Child

The other day, my daughter’s kindergarten class needed an assistant. Her mother had volunteered to help the class prepare a garden bed outside of their classroom- it was full of weeds and unprepeared soil, and needed to be tended to. When she woke feeling ill that day, I was volunteered in her place. This annoyed me. I had SO much work to do- how dare I be interrupted! So it was with reluctance that I strolled into the classroom that day.
Immediately, I was met with my daughter’s typical adorating smile when I walked in. Soon we were toiling in the garden with a few other members of the class. The kids began to turn the weed pulling into a treasure hunt. We had to eliminate the weeds in order to find the real treasures. Before long, they were pulling up a shell or two here and there, and we began to mount a pile of booty. The feeling of annoyance began to fade, and I joined in the excitement of the hunt. Eventually, I lost myself in the wonderment of the moment, and the kids’ mood enveloped me. The work didn’t matter; the petty world surrounding us didn’t matter- we created our own finite yet fantastic reality that afternoon. I left the class refreshed, renewed, and smiling. It was a great gift that they gave to me.
Since, I’ve tried to remember that lesson throughout each day. My troubles are a speck in the cosmos, and infinitely trivial. So where’s the harm in letting the toils of the day slide from your mind, and creating a small, amazing reality in which you embrace yourself, your surroundings, and the world at large?

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