“I’m never too old to have fun,” a girl recently said to me. That’s something I need to learn. Like many kids these days, I grew up early in life. After the approximate age of 10, my childlike ways vanished.
At that point and by choice, my time was mainly spent around adults. Mentally I felt like a 30 year old, so being around kids my age didn’t interest me. The activities that they found to be amusing were all silly in my eyes, and the idea of being seen as a child was humiliating for me.
So I mentally grew up, and put all my childish ways behind me. They remain behind me to this day. I don’t like it, and never have. Jealousy can be a rotten thing, but I often get that way when I see others having a good time.
Who said adults can’t play in the water, in the mud, or swing around like a child? There’s also nothing wrong with rolling in the grass, or skipping down the sidewalk with your children. Adults can have just as much fun as kids can, yet I’m not allowed to because of my self-imposed rules.
Yesterday, I took my son to an amusement park. We decided to walk around first to see what all he would like to do, before purchasing the tickets. All except for two rides, he didn’t want to participate in or get on anything else that was there. He even turned down a building project ‘toy’ that I know he would have loved to have.
It was supposed to be a fun day, but he didn’t want to do anything fun. I got upset and very disappointed. We stopped to discuss the issue, and as the words began rolling off my tongue, I realized that he was just like me. By example, I have turned my child into an adult. He’s a stick in the mud, because I am.
That’s not to say, that we don’t do fun things. We do. We go on hikes together, stick our feet in the rivers, and go on walks, but those are adult activities. My son’s not an adult, and he should feel free to be a kid. Yet he doesn’t, and it’s primarily my fault.
That needs to change. Because of the unreasonable rules I have applied to myself, I have missed out on many opportunities. Now it’s being passed down to him. That is one of the main qualities that I dislike about myself, and have always wanted to change, but could never bring myself to do so.
My son is now my motivation. I have to change this, so that he will. He’s always been a mini-me, so it’s my job to make sure that he’s not mimicking my undesirable and unnecessary qualities and limitations.
We’re going to change this. We’re going to have fun. Together, we will learn how.
Seeing as how this ‘being a kid’ thing is new for me, I’d love to hear any advice or suggestions that you may have.