It doesn’t matter what year you are born. Some things in life, like those weird aches and pains or the astonishing age advancement of your kids, make you feel older. But then there are those lovely little gifts that burble forth like the fountain of youth. Experiences that make you feel like a kid again.
This past weekend I asked the two men I live with to list a few things that make them feel they’ve dropped a decade or two.
Jordan, not quite 25, thought a minute and mentioned these:
- “Walking downtown like I used to do on the Cape.
- “Fooling around with my cousins in the pool at Family Camp each year.
- “Buying 25 cent toys from the vending machine with Adam at Happy Gardens in Moundsville.”
Mike, a few decades Jordan’s senior, offered his own list:
- “Making pancake shapes to order for the kids on Christmas morning.
- “Riding my bike or the scooter around Wheaton with you.
- “Doing my swim workout with the college kids.”
(Two out of three of Mike’s have to do with sports. What does that tell you?)
And I didn’t have to think hard at all. My short list of age-defying behaviors includes:
- Enjoying raspberry fudge-chunk ice cream at Tate’s.
- Waiting in line at the one-aisle-wide Popcorn Shoppe in downtown Wheaton.
- Taking time to squeeze old-fashioned lemonade like my mom always did when the men were baling hay.
(Gosh, all three of mine have to do with food. What does that tell you?)
But here’s the best age-defying activity of all: getting your own student ID. A week from today I start grad school, and when I got my new ID card this summer I thought I would wriggle right out of my seat with excitement. A student again after all these decades. Pinch me. Am I dreaming?
Scripture warns us against immaturity. Childish behavior is cute only in kids. But the Bible has kind things to say about childlikeness.
“The Lord protects those of childlike faith,” observes Psalm 116:6. And in Matthew 11:25, Jesus offered a prayer of thanks for things God reveals to the childlike.
I’m in my third trimester of life now, but the prospect of returning to school next week to study under knowledgeable professors makes me feel childlike in the most full- of- wonder way.
I’m feelin’ like a kid again!