As a parent I love to watch my kids as they grow and do different activities. But sometimes it makes me skip a heart beat as I cringe helplessly on the sidelines.
When My oldest daughter, Jennifer, was ice skating, we got past the little falls, because before long she was out there doing jumps and spins and I would jump and spin inside. When she was a cheerleader, of course, she had to be the flyer, the one on top that they throw in the air, so wouldn't you expect it that she would be the high diver too? That platform is pretty far up there! Our second daughter, Kimmy, rode horses and she was very tiny but the horse was very big! We knew whatever sport that Kimmy played, that had to do with a ball, that she would inevitably get hit! One time with a soft ball right on her braces and we had an emergency visit to the orthodontist.
Now we have this new family in Uganda. We seem to have to go through this again but this time we have boys too! Well John loves to climb trees, and we have a big magnificent climbing tree in the front of the compound. Really if I was younger I would be climbing it too. John is an exceptional climber, and he gets up there so high and sometimes just looks around at the surrounding areas, very quietly, in fact you would not even know he is up there. One day I went outside and thought John and some of the other kids were out there and I just started looking around and didn't see anyone, then I remembered to look up in the tree, and there he was.
John waves and says very quietly, almost whispers, Jjaja (grandpa), and points down below him at a nest of birds. He has a big smile on his face as he towers in the upper branches above this little family, just observing life. I am not cringing now, but I am a little envious, but really happy for him, because he had a real birds's eye view!.
I am glad that I did not allow my fear to stop my children from growing and experiencing life! What makes this extra special to me is that John was on the streets less than two years ago. For this twelve year old little boy, we are his first real family experience, I can now see him starting to grasp the importance of family.