Over the past few days, I’ve realized that I want to be more like my toddler. As I watched him run around in the pouring down rain (remember this?), laughing and splashing in the puddles until his rain boots were full of water, I couldn’t help but think about the well-known quote by Vivian Greene: “Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain.” Although I realize right now he’s still too young to understand the true significance and meaning behind this quote, there will come a day when life will send him a ‘storm.’ If I had to guess, I’m pretty sure he’ll throw on his raincoat, pull out his rain boots and dance to the sound of the thunder.
As I was walking with him through the grocery store and he randomly broke out in song, I just had to laugh. He was strutting down the aisle, smiling and singing completely off-key, but that didn’t matter to him… not for one second. The kid has no fear. He truly marches to the beat of his own drum and whatever he feels like doing, that’s exactly what he does. It made me wonder to myself: when did life teach me that I had to worry about what people think? So you know what? Next time he decides to belt out a song in the middle of the grocery store, I might just sing right along with him.
As I was tucking him in for bed one night, I apologized for having been impatient with him earlier that day. He responded by wrapping his arms around my neck and whispering in my ear, “It’s o-tay, I wuv you! We can play Legos ‘morrow morning?” (Translation: It’s okay, I love you! Can we play Legos tomorrow morning?) It made me wonder what it would be like to be that quick to forgive. How much of a burden would be lifted from our shoulders if we forgave, before we were even asked or whether we were even asked at all? What would it be like to wake up every morning with the past truly forgotten? I wish I could answer those questions, but I’m still a work in progress myself.
It’s the way the smallest things make him happy. The way he’s truly amazed by the world around him, every butterfly, bug and flower. The way he always wants to know what he can do to help me. His emotions may change from minute to minute, but when he loves… he loves. He trusts without hesitation and believes the best in everyone, including me.
There’s something beautiful about a heart that’s never been broken and a spirit that’s never been trampled. And this boy, my friends, has a beautiful heart… he’s teaching me more than I could ever teach him.