We walk from the car holding hands and then she stops.
“I’m going to just stand right here. Okay?”
I don’t blame her. There’s a silent fire engine 10 feet in front of us. In her little mind, I’d expect it to jump to life at any instant, lights and siren blaring. We talk about how there are no people or keys in it to turn on the lights. I offer to hold her hand so we can squeeze beside it to explore the abandoned house next to it.
“I can do it myself.”
I’ve seen her bravery grow the more we’ve been out adventuring. To the point where a ginormous fire engine is nothing more than a curiosity instead of a roaring dragon threatening to jump to life. We pick berries, find photo op spots, and I carry both kids and camera through the jungle-like grass and weeds to the front porch.
You can see the jungle of weeds in these photos. And Ada adamantly walks through about half of it all by herself, stomping down brush twice her height. Then, after getting tangled in a vine, requests I carry her, in addition to her brother, the rest of the way. I’ll have to remember to take a photo of the ridiculousness we walk through and how we do it.
Where did this bravery come from? When we first started, we both stuck to the car like tipsy babies cling to the couch when learning how to walk. Now she’s letting go of my hand to explore on her own.
The unknown is a big source of fear that can cripple us from exploring and trying new things. I’m seeing myself that by taking even the smallest of baby steps, you overcome a lot. Try it and you’ll be wading through jungle-like weeds to reach the clearing in no time. And your adventures will take you to places you’d never imagine you’d be. In that clearing, I’m finding passion. Passion that becomes hard to contain. It’s an exciting adventure with a worthwhile discovery.