Friday, July 22, 2011

Where Did the Inner Child Go?

A fortune teller once told me that I would always be young, would always be youthful.  She smiled kindly as she said it, so I (thankfully) didn't take it to mean that I would die young.  She was right though, and I knew it.  I am what some might call "young at heart".  I still wonder what I will be when I "grow up" (for the record, I am thirty-two).  I laugh really loud, I dance like no one is watching, I have fun and, most important - I dream like a child.  And this, I think, is what she saw.

Why are dreams something that adults want to instill in their children, but something they lose themselves along the way?  Why when we are young we are told we can be anything we want to be, but when we get older doubt sets in?  When people raise children they want to raise them to be able to dream and believe in their's the priority of many parents I know.  So what changes?  I know that socio-economics has a huge hand in prohibiting some, but there are plenty of people who have come from nothing and achieved greatness and lived their dreams despite being dealt a bad hand.  Luck?  Perhaps.  But I tend to be of the mindset that you make your own luck;  you make the bed you lie in.  Some make the most of the hand they are dealt, and some do not.

I personally think this loss of the inner child is taught.  I think society trains us to forego dreams for more "realistic expectations".  Narrow mindedness is learned - all you have to do is look at a wide-eyed child to know that.  When someone has a grandiose plan, the vast majority of us see only why something can't work, instead of trying to figure out a way that it can.  What if the Wright brothers listened to everyone that scoffed at them?  Can you imagine?  Two boys saying they're going to make a flying machine - back in the early 1900's!? They must have been the looney tunes of the neighborhood. And now millions and millions of people fly every year, all because of these two brothers who never let go of their dreams. Orville wrote of his childhood: "We were lucky enough to grow up in an environment where there was always much encouragement for children to pursue intellectual interests; to investigate whatever aroused curiosity."  What a gift; I for one am thankful they never lost it.

We are surrounded by bitter, negative voices that tell us we can't, that we're not good enough, that it won't work, that we're no good.  It's only a matter of time before those voices get into our own heads.  I think it's time people looked inside and rediscovered their inner children.  The ones that wanted to be astronauts, dancers, doctors, and magicians - the ones who thought anything was possible.

As Nietzsche once said,

"In every man a child is hidden that want's to play".

To sum it all up - I think it's play time!

Brittany & Scott


Captain Rizzo said...

Brittany, you are wise beyond your years. Not sure what your hole cards are but you and Scott have gone "all in!"

Lisa Hanneman said...


Love you and your laugh.

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