At 34 years old, and at the dawn of yet another new year, I wish life were simpler. Simple like it was when I was a child. Yes, the unfettered access you have as an adult to just about everything is pretty great. Once in while, though, I wish I could go back to just being a kid. Life was pure, clean, simple, and happy.
I left work a few weeks ago and noticed an event in the local hockey arena. The event: Disney on Ice. Back in the day I went often with my parents. One, or both of them, would bring us to the Boston Garden to see the show. I saw the carts carrying Disney memorabilia on the street and inside the arena as I drove by, headed home after work. The glowing and bedazzled items on the cart reminded me of the Mickey Mouse flash light that spun, as you twisted and writhed your wrist. There were red and blue ones. During the show, the characters on skates would prompt the audience to turn on and spin their lights to help with the adventures taking place on the ice. It was exciting to be part of the show, and to have a part of it to take home with me after it was over. I remember so well sitting in the seats with my Mom and Dad, spinning the light, and just feeling happy, safe, and entertained.
I miss small things like that as an adult. You get glimpses of it. I got a glimpse back into that world as I drove by a few weeks ago. I reminded myself how blessed and grateful I was to have parents that would take us to Disney on Ice, and even to Disney World itself. Not many kids have or had these opportunities. I get warm hearted just thinking about it. Disney on Ice is a small thing, one small positive memory that reminded me of two important things, 1) how blessed I am to have the childhood I did, and 2) to remember that the feeling of happiness and safety are not elusive; I can still experience these states of being through play, self love, and self-care.
In 2014 I want to live simply with fewer thoughts and anxieties flying through my mind. As a child, one has fewer worries and concerns. As an adult, it is a choice to make your life simple, or complicated. (At least I think it is?) For some reason I always seem to choose the complicated route. Lately, I have chosen to keep it simple in my relationships with others. Just do the right thing, say something positive, do not be a drama queen. The same needs to be true of how I talk to myself. It is hard to talk to others in a positive way, when your self talk is inherently negative. Perhaps, I have it backward, and as many people say, I need to take care with myself before I can care for any one I meet.
I’m trying each and every day to make my life simple by choosing the kind way. So why is it difficult? Why does it come and go? I think the emotions get in the way and bleed into other situations. And I guess because I need more practice, and more play in my life. I must let go of those negative things that I hold on to. I did hold on to, and collect the negative while I was a child. I collected toys, craft and art supplies, and kept a journal, among other things. I was part of positive experiences, like Disney on Ice, thanks to my devoted parents. Cultivating positive experiences, taking part in a few each day to keep me positive in the moment, and scheduling some other larger events to look forward to, may lead to a better way of life in 2014. In other words, I must care for myself, so I can help and maintain positive interactions with others.
I know I can’t do this all alone, so if you happen to have one of those Mickey Mouse flashlights, dust it off put some batteries in it, light it up, and spin it to help me on my adventure as we move into 2014 with a renewed attitude. I promise to go find mine and do the very same for you.