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Playing with the Wild Things

There is no creation in a child’s heart and mind without present parents.

Do you ever want to run away? Find that little boy or girl that once slew dragons, flew to the moon, and ran alongside the wild things in the forests of our imaginations. Some days the weight of the world is too much, and I long for the freedom of childhood when life was still, new, and amazing. Every day something would profoundly change you, it was wonderful. When we looked at one another, different yet the same, and we managed to keep our own faiths, beliefs, morals and opinions to ourselves. We would look upon new faces and new cultures with amazement and excited genuine curiosity.

I imagine there was so much I didn't see through the eyes of a child, but perhaps this is sacred, being a child I mean. I think that we all might go back and enjoy that afternoon nap we so screamed in protest to our parents about. Maybe a do-over, on that family dinner where you yelled at your aunt Agnes, the one that pinches cheeks and smells funny. Maybe if we really understood time, and concept that all people in our lives are precious, intended and important maybe we should appreciate those in our lives, after all, they won't be around forever, at least in this lifetime.

I miss the safety of walking the streets at night, the worst thing to pop out at me was a stray cat that was more afraid of me then I was of him. There were no cells phones and yet 99 percent of us made it home safely, for those that didn’t an entire community mourned along with the family. There were a few broken bones or stitches, but they healed. We learned, when the street lights suddenly went on, like a string of diamonds all at once, we knew it was time to make our way home, dinner, family time, bath and bed. How routine our lives were and we complained so much didn't we? Picking up our laundry, made us make our beds and rake leaves. Such small favours for such a simple good life. Yet with no wisdom or understanding we took it as torture, not a life lesson, but again we learned and we grew.

Summer days lazing on a beach with friends, laughing, exploring, telling and keeping secrets. Do you miss them, those friends you were inseparable with? Those first connections were so important we become one another's family, protectors and confidants. Yes, it gives you an urge to go searching Facebook, doesn’t it?

There was some bad, too. We all remember the lost fights, new love, broken hearts and personal betrayals. Let us not get into bad hair cuts, even worse choices or lack of personal fashion style, personally, Personally, I was more of a geek. But even that was okay, I certainly wasn’t alone. We need all types of people in this world. Some will be the next Wayne Gretzky, others will be the future Bill Gates. Perhaps Canadians will luck out and one of our children could become Prime Minister. A word of advice from an old gal, still trying to learn new tricks herself , take your children places, take away their phones. It's not against their rights, it's opening their eyes to other worlds, read to them every night, because one night when your children have left, and you wake in the middle of the night, you will wish you’d read Clifford just one more time, or let them stomp in that puddle, because it's just water and dirt. Those aren’t the memories your children will remember, the dirt, the messy house, the dishes in the sink. No, they will remember the adventures, and fun, and the truth. Give them the advantage of a balanced real-world-virtual world.

Let your children explore, make friends, do not place your fears, your dislikes, your disrespects upon them. Give them room to make their own friends, their own choices. Let them roam with the wild things in the forest, and battle pirates with them as often as you can. There is no creation in a child’s heart and mind without present parents. Give your children a real-world childhood.