Friday, May 30, 2014

Never Let Your Child Die

She stopped momentarily, staring at the items on the conveyor belt. "So, you still play with crayons?"  With no sense of humor in her voice. "Yes.  Why not?", I defend.  "I just thought they were for little kids." With a sneer I've never seen before, then continued scanning the UPC codes and ringing me up.  I pay for the bunch.  Poster board, crayolas, sticky letters, glue, .....  A pack as if I'm getting ready to build a project for a 2nd grader. "Nope.  It's all for me.", I smile back while leaving.  Honestly, I was half expecting to be escorted out by security from her reaction.

I'm still a person who puts his hand out the window driving, fanning the air as if to give my car wings. I imagine taking off in a plane when ever I go over a huge interchange bridge. I still make my own echo sounds.  I imagine having rocket boots when I run (complete with sound effects).  I seriously will hum my own backtrack music throughout the day.  I talk to imaginary people. And yes, I go to stores to buy crayons... For me.  I don't find any of this odd at all. 

I take the loot back to my house and begin to put together a "What If" board.  It's a board to help keep your life positive and on track. While working on it, and humming the theme to The A-Team, I began to notice something very simple...

I have completely embraced my inner child.

And I don't think that is something most people do.  Growing up, I feel that we're constantly beaten down with 'grow up!', 'responsibility!', 'act your age!' (whatever the hell that means).  That most people lock their child away in the deepest recesses of their mind, never allowing them to come out again.

For some, that child goes there and dies.

What is lost?  Your child is the real you, the 'core' you.  Who you are today is this child with stacks of 'life' on top of them.  And if you allow this child to die off, you cease to be a definable person, as 'life' is merely a series of facts, events, and variables.  'Life' doesn't define 'you' ...... here..... Mmmmm....... I'll use math to describe this: 

x = 4

x + 3 + 9 + 7 + 1 + 15 + 3 = ?

So the answer is '42'.  We have a starting point, then a series of variables that happen, and end up at 42.  Nobody would argue at this conclusion.  But what about this:
x = ?

x + 3 + 9 + 7 + 1 + 15 + 3 = ?

So where are we at now?  Who are we?  We have the same 'life' in both situations, so we should have almost the same number... Right?  This 'x', this starting point, this 'inner child' IS the foundation of who you are.  Without it, you become a wandering soul desperately looking for anything to help you define yourself.

What's worse...  Are those people who warp you, telling you that:

x = political party
x = religion
x = race
x = job
x = money
x = sports team

It's ok for these to be a part of your life, but they are not the 'core' you.  Unfortunately, for the 'lost ones', they will substitute these into their core definition of themselves.  They'll move through life changing 'x' over and over again trying to 'find themselves'.  All while their true 'x' is locked away inside of themselves waiting to be freed.

So, let your child out and be free.  Become re-acquainted with your child.  Get to know your child.  Love and embrace your inner child everyday.  Allow your child to be as silly and fun as they want to be.  And MOST important... 
Never let your child die.

That child is 'you', the real you.

(...and if your child wants crayons, you buy them some crayons)


Have a fantastic week!
--Paul Jacob Evans