I can remember being told as a kid “get off of that,” “you’re gonna hurt yourself,” or “put that down. “ This seems to be the daily chorus shouted by my parents to me and my younger brother. I also recall that we hardly ever listened until the consequences became dire enough for us to take heed to our guardian’s warnings. What were they trying to ultimately protect us from? At the time we didn’t really get it, but today I would say they didn’t want us to max out our life expectancy at 7 or 8 years of existence.
Although safety was a big factor, I think that something else was in play here as well. Maybe they wanted to see us live a longer life, but at the same time I feel that they were stifling our adventurous nature. Now I am not saying that they should’ve let us run all Lord of the Flies like, but a few things could’ve made it passed the parental protective gates. When your sense of curiosity is transformed into risk aversion, then we all become nothing but people that follow the leader.
I find myself now in the same boat as my parents and their parents before them. Our little kamikaze toddler has become twice the little daredevil that I was. One could even say that he is the product of the combined energies of my brother and me, which may prove to be trouble in the long run. Even though I can see some of the hazardous outcomes that are on the horizon, I sometimes sit and cautiously watch the little guy to see how he will get out of each predicament. I love to watch his little wheels turning while he sticks out his pondering tongue and goes for gold. At his current age, he is just so free because he is still figuring out life.
Sometimes when we are figuring out what to do right or wrong, we often test out all possible theories with a certain air of carelessness. Is this a bad thing though? I mean, what exactly do we have to lose?
So, getting back to the idea of adventure and risk aversion, when exactly are these ideals either lost or attained?
I believe that we, as human beings, are born with a daring spirit. If we weren’t born this way, there would be no need to learn about the world around us. Everyone would simply plop out of the womb and sit there with no desire to thrive and grow. Not everyone suppresses the carefree and curious side of themselves, but the majority of us do. Complacency becomes the part of our soul that tells us that there is no need to see what the world around us has to offer. Then, we naturally pass down these ideals to our young until they are non-thrill seeking, non-conversational, agoraphobics. This is exponentially evident if we look back at our childhood and the paths that we took to grow to be adults.
There is no way that I want to be the above to reflect the profile of who I am. So I just want to thank my son for awaking the adventurous side of me.
Thanks for reading