“When we are children we seldom think of the future. This innocence leaves us free to enjoy ourselves as few adults can. The day we fret about the future is the day we leave our childhood behind.” ― Patrick Rothfuss, The Name of the Wind
As a kid I remember being eager to grow up-- eager to be able to stay out late, to drive a car, to have ice cream for breakfast if I fancied eating it first thing in the morning. My notion of what adulthood could be was filled with silliness and wild adventures. Before the world around me turned binary, I was painting my world with impossibilities. I don't mean "impossibilities" as a negative, what I'm trying to say is that even the most mundane was peppered with magic.
"Only boring people get bored," is what my mom would say whenever my brothers and I complained about being bored, and I was pretty determined not to be boring. As a kid I could amuse myself for hours with very little, there was wonder in absolutely everything. In the blink of an eye I would go from being a princess to the next X-men superhero, I could go from flying to free-falling. I pretended to be shy as a kid, but really I loved being the center of attention. I was a ham and I loved entertaining my parent's friends when they came to the house.
Somewhere on the path to adulthood I started to retreat. I began asking for permission and I started to measure everything. Without measuring how was I supposed to know that I was doing right? Measuring became a duty, a ridiculously stupid duty that I'm actively working to unlearn. I want...no, I need to create. There are days when I have so much to take care of, work to get done, but all I can think about is writing or reading a new script. Lately I've been wanting to paint! I've never been a good painter (not even close), because I want to do it, and being lousy at it shouldn't stop me from just playing. Besides, as my 4th grade teacher Mr. Jim said, "there are no mistakes in art." Maybe I ought to hang those words up in a place where I can see it daily.
In what I want to do, playing is so important, and I keep forgetting that fact. Going to the Museum of Ice Cream the other day was the reminder that I needed. Of-course I had seen all the pictures, but actually being there exceeded all of my expectations. The little girl in me was screaming with joy! She was doing cartwheels, eagerly jumping in place, and had a smile that stretched further than her ears. Running around the museum I didn't care how silly I looked, I didn't care how many times I stopped, or that I wanted to take a million pictures. Walking through, I didn't want it to end.
The sense of wonder that washed over me when I walked into that decadently adorable museum is what I need more of. Actually, I think it's what all of us need more of. Yes, responsibility is important, but we all have an inner child that's just itching to play and be silly. So maybe for a second you look like an idiot, if you're having a great time, why the hell should it matter what anyone thinks? I say f@#k 'em! My mid-year resolution is to have more of that who cares attitude, to embrace my sense of wonder, to create because I have the need not responsability to do so.
When was the last time that you let your inner child come out to play?