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The Sleepy Eye Herald Dispatch
  • Be a full participant in life!

  • I had the privilege to meet a most passionate five-year-old boy the other day.
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  • I had the privilege to meet a most passionate five-year-old boy the other day. His eyes were wide and his energy bright. He enthusiastically and respectfully joined a crowd of people and shared his stories with adults and older children, as if he were a king ~ knowing that what he had to say was unquestionably important. He was proud of his experiences; what he knew and what he liked, and he knew we would be interested. He seemed to have no uncertainty that people are meant to visit with one another; that we are meant to tell our stories and listen to those of others. His smile was as big as could be as he explained how his dog got his name and demonstrated his swift running skills. Absolutely full of life and participating with eager intent.
     
    The word observer has been defined as an antonym to participant. It seems to me that a full participant in life is also an observer. Taking note of the treasures that present themselves daily, appreciating who and what surrounds you, just because it’s part of the gift of life. I feel strongly that children teach us and remind us of what is important in life; they demonstrate kindness, appreciation and openness. They bring people together, provide examples of community building and they fully experience what life has to offer. Characters from cartoons come to life, songs are sung with exuberance, trees and nature are embraced for climbing, supporting and enhancing the imagination, people are greeted with excitement and everything and everyone is important.
     
    I feel fortunate to have participated in the Kaylie and Tyler’s 5K color run/walk a couple of weekends ago. It was the entire day that was incredible, but what seemed to impact me most was the heartfelt reminder to practice kindness in all that we do; to take care of one another and eliminate criticism. We are here for a short time and there is really so much greatness that occurs all around us.
     
    Let’s appreciate it all, big and small! Whether we learn from a young zealous child, angels in our midst, or receive reminders from community members, slow down today and put both feet into your journey. Share your stories, listen to others, enjoy the sunshine and the rain, smell the flowers, pick up cool rocks, learn something new, meet someone new, breath in the fresh air and find the good in everything and everyone.

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