Wednesday, January 9, 2013

When You are Five

You sing out loud without worrying what other people will think.

You dance to your song, not considering if your moves are cool.

You give food an actual thumbs-down when you put it in your mouth and it tastes bad.

You tell someone if you like them (or not).

You love with your whole heart.

You want to learn all the things.

When you are five you filter nothing and take in everything.

Last night our son was at swimming lessons.  He is re-taking the same level again.  It is clear he has the same fear of water I had at his age.  I am not too concerned about this, as once I got over the fear I became a fish and would swim any time I encountered so much as a puddle.  The instructor took the students into the deep end and onto the short dive board.  When it came to his turn he crouched down on the end and it was clear he didn't want to jump in.  She seems to be no-nonsense, and I could tell she was commanding him to get in.  Once he did, and bobbed to the surface (with the help of a noodle tied to his waist) he was over the moon.  He climbed the ladder, skipped to the back of the line, was singing loudly, and danced while punching at the sky.  Oblivious to the looks other kids were giving him.  Not caring what anyone thought.  He conquered a fear.  He was celebrating.  His next jump was a jump.  An arms in the air, catapulting himself upwards off the board with all his might, splashing in fine five-year-old boy form, jump. 

When I witnessed this, I thought we could all learn a little from five year-olds.  They are uninhibited still.  They revel in their emotions.  Free of the temper tantrums of toddlerhood, yet allow themselves to fully immerse in joy and sorrow.  Willing to sing out loud whatever is in their head.  Willing to dance if so moved.  Willing to celebrate accomplishments with abandon.  When do we lose this? I think I am going to try to take some of it back.  Dance some more.  Sing even if I am off key.  And I won't worry (or at least try not to) who thinks I've lost my mind.  Because after all, why shouldn't I celebrate the best moments in life with gusto?