To See The World As A Child

via Creative Commons

“Children see magic because they look for it.” Christopher Moore

Last week I had the pleasure of touring a new playground at our local school with my friend and her eight-year-old daughter. This was a custom tour, mind you, with the sort of demonstrations and pro tips that only an elementary school kid could deliver.

In fact, when my friend asked her daughter if she wanted to visit the playground, the little girl said with a look of mild exasperation, “Mom…it’s only my favorite place in the world!”

This seemed such a simple thing but my mind went back to this many times in the week since. What a joy it is to see the world through the eyes of a child! Here’s are some things that children find fascinating that we take for granted:

  • Push-up pops
  • Firetrucks
  • Sparklers
  • Whipped cream dispensers
  • Ferris wheels

At some point in our lives, we think it’s either unseemly or uncool to let things fill us with wonder. What a tragedy this is!

I remember once when I was a child and I went to an auto parts store with my father. There on display was a large engine block. This was basically a machined block of metal weighing about 500 lbs, and yet I thought it was amazing. The store owner said that if I could carry it home, I could have it! And I did try with all my might to move it.

My friend Susan exhibits frequent bouts of wonder. When we’re together at sunrise or sunset, she is in awe of the colors of the sky. It was fun to visit Iceland with her because she pursued every vista, every waterfall, every night sky. And she seizes any opportunity to dress up in fancy and imaginative outfits, as she did last week at our adult prom.

My playground tour has encouraged me to re-kindle my sense of wonder. Maybe that means seeing how high I can fly a kite on a windy day. Going for a tour of a factory to see how something is made. Talk to someone in medical research to see how she is trying to change the world.

Going back to my playground tour: we found a pole that all three of us want to climb. I wonder if three people whose ages are 8, 39, and 57 can all make it up the pole? Maybe that’s a good place to start!

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