Tuesday, August 17, 2010

That Childlike Wonder

Do you remember when you were a kid and the smallest thing made you happy? You couldn’t wait to shout, “Mommy, look!” or “Daddy, guess what!”

Think about those memories for a minute… I know you’ve got some great ones way back in the corner of your mind…

Are you thinking about it?

I bet it took you a bit to access the feelings you associated with that childlike wonder, and I bet you started to wonder when you stopped feeling that way.

It’s so easy to be consumed by the adult world and its ability to be ridiculously mundane, while in the very same breathe, the adult world has the uncanny ability to be ridiculously exhausting. It’s mundanely exhausting! Or is that exhaustingly mundane?

So what do we do about it? How do we access that childlike wonder?

I think that the key to loving life (the way we did as kids) is to pay very close attention to the details and then revel in them at every turn. We’ve got to forget about the whole “But I’m adult!” rationalization we so frequently use to excuse our stress levels and set ways. We’ve got to make room for loving those little details again.

Where is that childlike wonder?


I must humbly admit that I haven’t been keeping in touch with my inner child as I should. As I type this admission, I realize that I need to be more cognizant of all the awe-inspiring things that surround my senses. I need to be more aware of the tiny celebrations that pop up everyday. Because lately, I’ve been letting my little mind get a little crazy, and I’ve been worry about things I can’t control. And since my mind can only house a given amount of neurotic thoughts at a time, it’s about time I kick them out on the mean streets so I can make room for the thoughts that make me happy, the thoughts that make life grand.

So what did I love today? What are those awe-inspiring things? What are my tiny celebrations?

(But more importantly for you, what are yours? What brings you joy? What keeps the childlike wonder alive?)

First of all, I love the first sip of a cold drink on a hot summer day. I love how I can feel that cool bubble of liquid travel from my lips, to my tongue, to my throat, and down into my belly. It’s a perfect feeling.

Secondly, I love the way my little white dog wiggles her butt when she runs down the stairs. I am laughing right now because I can see her in my mind's eye. She loves to smile too. So there she is in my memory, wiggling her butt and smiling as she runs down the stairs to greet me with a wet puppy-dog kiss.

I’ve got one more... I love my red couch. I wanted a red couch for years, convincing myself that it would be my muse. Turns out I was right. After a long day at work, I open the window blinds and plop down of my red couch. That late sun comes in, bathing my skin with a light dusting of warmth, and I am extended on my slice of Heaven.

Doesn’t get any better than that.

Reminding myself of those things prompts me to realize that I had a good day, and that no stress is worth diminishing these things. No bad thought is worth entertaining.

So I’ll ask you again... What are the little things you love? What are your tiny celebrations? How do you keep that childlike wonder alive in this mundanely exhausting adult world?

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