An invitation to joy…
I have been most fortunate over the years to have met some truly wonderful souls…many of them children. If you pay attention children will teach you more about yourself, and this world, than you could possibly dream of teaching them.
Each of us is born a clean slate…over the years… it is what and who we encounter in life…that writes on that slate…altering how we present ourselves to this world. However…we are also born with our own unique spirit…that goes far in determining how we process what comes our way…filter it…and return it to the world in our own voice.
As adults we accumulate much flotsam and jetsam…often clogging up how we filter things and causing us to not be quite as curious and open as our younger selves…leaving one to miss out on much of what naturally brought joy to our lives as children. This is where children teach us important life lessons…such as staying curious and being joyful.
Today I encountered one of the most enchanting little souls . He was all of year at most…hanging about his brother’s hip…his brother’s arm wrapped about his waist as he helped his mother bag her things with his other hand. Here is this child surfing about the backof his brother’s hip, all gangly arms and legs, just taking in the world from his own little vantage point. At first I thought what caught my eye was how his brother just sort of loosely held him about his hip and how the child just seemed to be content to hang out there…going with the flow…getting a bit tossed around as his brother occasionally shifted his weight. Something just kept drawing me to him and at one point he was just close enough to another shopper that he could reach out and just graze the corner of her purse…his face erupted in pure JOY…his mouth opened as if the biggest belly laugh would come tumbling out…all for being able to reach out and touch this woman’s purse. The most incredible thing was that he didn’t break out in huge unabashed giggles…it was a silent soulful joy…all his…pure pleasure.
My heart lurched…I was taken in and could not stop watching this little joyful soul and…for a few brief moments…get lost in his enchantment. I caught his eye and again he tossed his head back and opened his mouth to those big fat silent belly laughs…causing me to smile and giggle with his infectious joy.
When the family was finally finished and ready to go…I just had to stop his mother and tell her what I had observed…her face broke out in a knowing grin…and she said he was the most easy going baby she’d ever known. I’d opened the flood gates…his older brothers couldn’t stop telling me how amazing their little brother was! They told me how he got the unusual tiny bruise on the bridge of his nose…one of them had accidentally hit him with their fishing pole. The whole family simultaneously said “and all he did was look at us and break out in giggles”. The way they said it showed the gift this child brought to his family and to this world…they were as enchanted and filled with wonder as I. It was so obvious this child changed the dynamics of his little family with his pure joyful spirit. The force of that spirit was so captivating that he not only affected his immediate family but also others such as myself.
This small child , with this enchanting gift, reminded me how lovely it is to to stay open and welcome these moments into our lives everyday. He blew away the fog about my brain engaging my synapsis…sending signals to my own spirit…an invitation to JOY.