Thursday 19 April 2012

Through James' looking glass

"What advantages does adulthood have over childhood?" asked Julia.

As I thought about it, I couldn't think of an awful lot of advantages.

Perhaps childhood really is lost on the young, but there's no excuse for childhood to be lost on parents.

Being a parent allows us to experience childhood again with, if we are lucky, a little more wisdom.  I realise that in the 18 months since James was born, I have never laughed so much, I've never smiled so widely, nor have I ever loved so much. 

He is so perfectly confident in who he is, unburdened by doubts; even failures, though frustrating for him, are simply brushed aside as he moves on with something else.  He is tremendously curious and open, he hugs and kisses strangers, laughs all day long (well, mostly!), and is completely honest. 

James thinks outside the box, because he has no box.  He is connected to the best of who he is.  He's not second guessing himself - that's me.  He isn't worried about his figure - that's me.  He's not afraid of failing either - me again.  

It is a cliche, and definitely easier said than done, but I do hope that appreciating his kindness, his freshness and openness, will melt some of the adult out of me, dissolving some of the accumulated fears and pains of adulthood and reconnecting me with the purity and joy of my own soul.

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