It's not always my instinct to say yes. I had to learn this lesson the hard way when Jude was a toddler. Sometimes I'd make the mistake of saying no too quickly. In typical toddler fashion, he'd throw a tempter tantrum. I didn't want him to believe we get our way in life by throwing tantrums. Yet I'd also wonder why the heck I said no in the first place. (There's an old adage about this very thing: pick your battles.)
On Sunday, Indigo and I went out to a coffee shop together. She brought a few art supplies and did some drawing. I did some meal planning followed by some reading and journaling. As we were driving home, she told me she felt the music in the coffee shop was too loud to really relax. This took me by surprise because I felt exactly the same way. As we pulled into our neighborhood, she suggested we go on a photography adventure. Indigo and Evie love to search out spots to take photos and they also love to be followed by my camera. It's the documenting of an adventure! As much as I adore photography, I frankly wasn't in the mood at that moment. But Indigo persisted, "Mom, it would give us a chance to relax... together."
I acquiesced and pulled up to our neighborhood gazebo, hoping to snap a few photos and be on our way. She had other ideas and beckoned me toward some trees. Follow me, mom.
Hidden behind the trees was an open field full of wild flowers. It was breathtaking -glorious - flooded with light.
She danced in the fields, brushing the flowers with her fingers. She slowed to examine them in all of their simple glory.
Afterward, she led me back to a woods, walking on top of a log as if it were a balance beam as she made her way there. The strong sunlight was filtered by the trees creating the most magical, yummy, sparkly bokeh.
She climbed a tree.
When she jumped down, she discovered the head of a dandelion gone to seed. She was enthralled by it and the way each seed blew in the wind with her gentle puffs.
As we headed for home, I felt deeply grateful for this lesson I learned when Jude was just a wee one. To say yes. I thought of how much I would have missed had I said no. Not just this time, but cumulatively. Saying yes to messes, to spontaneity, to unexpected adventures! Our children have so much to teach us. Though we see, we often don't really see. They show us the wonder and the beauty that abounds all around us.
Sometimes we just have to be willing to say yes.