As a child, the box our dishwasher came in became a fort. A spoon was a plane that needed to land in my mouth and when I was jumping my bike in the backyard on a ramp made from a rickety wheelie bin, it was for the crown of ‘king of the universe’ in front of an imaginary crowd of 1000’s. And when I stacked it, it was of course a ‘trial run’ and my next attempt was really the ‘real’ shot at glory.
As I sat in the hospital emergency centre at fourteen years old with a badly broken arm from roller blading down a massive hill, the doctor heralded my heroic attempt and encouraged me to just wear wrist guards next time – not to stop doing it.
Life as a child was full of possibility, imagination, curiosity, trust, honesty and risk taking for big shots at glory. We could be anything we wanted to be and the people in our lives rarely shot us down. An astronaut? No problem. The prime minister? Sure if you want it. A rock star? We’ll all buy tickets to your show!
Then ‘life’ happened and suddenly we adopted the life of limitation. The same people started to install ‘practical’ and ‘realistic’ advice into our heads. If you failed, it meant ‘don’t try that again.’
Things started being seen as why they wouldn’t work. An idea we didn’t understand became dubious. It was easier to stick to what was safe for the fear of loss. Trusting few, being conservative and erring towards being a devil’s advocate became a socially rewarded position so it just became a self-fulfilling prophecy…
One day you just might see your nephew’s BMX bike at a family BBQ and suddenly your bike riding star days will flood back. As you’re plummeting down the backyard path, a voice will likely yell out from behind you telling you to act your age and think of all the things that COULD happen. After all, you have ‘more to lose’ now.
Perhaps you have something significant to gain.
Why does it seem that we work toward destroying and discouraging the child within each other? Sure you might break your arm, but what if you don’t and you become the champion of the universe times infinity plus one in front of everyone?
To me, many adults are just children who restrict potential. Stop being a poo poo pants and start loving your life like a child again.