Monday, January 23, 2012

Message to a little child on the beach

Dear Little Girl:

You ran along that beach yesterday as if you were never going to stop. Your little white legs propelled you along the sand, and your hair waved like tree branches in the afternoon breeze. It was a sunny afternoon and your bare skin, save for a pair of muddy knickers, seemed to soak up the rays of the declining sun.

I sat and watched as you ran: so carefree, so uninhibited, so oblivious to all those who paced, stormed, sauntered or strolled past. You were on your way to a destination that only you could see and it made me smile to see you having such fun.

As you get older, you will probably run with more precision, and less abandon. People will tell you to 'put on some clothes' and to 'slow down', to 'be careful'. You may start to notice the people around you and react according to how they respond to you - it's confusing I know but this is how adults get through life: we think about how others see us and then act according to how we see their reactions to us. Yes, as I say, it's confusing...

But in that moment in which I watched you run, life was not confusing. It was simple, it was pleasant and it was something to be celebrated. Little girl, you ran and ran and ran...and I didn't want to see you stop! I pray it will always be that way for you.

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