This summer I was fortunate to have created many new memories. I appreciate opportunities I have during the summer to take my children out of city living and expose them to treasures I found as a child in a rural area. We went camping one night during our summer trip. My daughters found a path which led to a creek bed behind where we were staying. Instantly there was a sparkle in their eyes as they noticed stepping stones that had become exposed by the drought. They felt certain no one else had a chance to see them because the water was previously too high. They knew, beyond any doubt, this was a passage that had never before been discovered. In the innocent mind of children, they knew they were stepping into space no one else had been lucky enough yet to find. This was their “secret passage”. Now, I don’t mean to ruin your imagination, but this was a common path many had taken before. Footsteps pushing into the grass on the other bank let me know someone had recently crossed this dried creek just as we were doing then. Of course, I let them have their imaginations explode with possibilities. I let their excitement spread to me and we carried on up the bank to see where this secret passage may lead. Lucky for us, the magic continued….
We crossed this secret passage, climbed up a small hill and there in front of us was a deer! My daughters have never discovered a deer on their own before. They saw one earlier that morning, but it had been a rescue animal confined in an enclosure while its wounds healed. Yet, this deer was alone in a field not far away. It became startled and ran away quickly. This secret passage led them to undiscovered wildlife! I have seen many deer throughout my life. I have seen them in fields, eating left over food dropped by combines and leaping too close to cars. Yet, I am still awed by their beauty and speed as they run from danger. I was grateful for the excitement and adoration this deer provided my daughters who had never seen one so close. Their awe was contagious as I again saw this animal’s power and beauty as if for the first time.
My daughters gave me a gift that day. They reminded me: Hold onto curiosity, excitement and awe for things never before seen and also those which you were not expecting to see again so soon. My girls are old enough to know realistically someone had crossed the creek before them. Yet, they were able to use imagination and see a mystical adventure waiting for them to discover rather than an ordinary path. Can we all do this with our lives? Can you do it? Can you leave the house today, and rather than experience the boredom of yet another path you’ve gone on before step out and explore what surrounds you as if it is yours alone to claim? Can you search with the eyes of a child and find new discoveries in an already discovered world? My daughters allowed me to take a journey with them and once again remember even though someone has seen something a thousand times, to others it is a remarkable sight they have never before seen.
Summer, for some in the world, is ready to say good-bye. Remember the discoveries that were made. Hold on to memories created. I hope you found an undiscovered passage that will offer you great joy and memories to cherish forever. What special experiences did you celebrate this summer?