Adventure with the Ceiling Fan
So much potential in so many ordinary things
The Brilliance of a Child's Mind
As we grow older, reality isn’t as miraculous as it was when we were children. As children, the impossible seamed possible and ordinary was often incredible. I am reminded of this every time my children see something that I all too often overlook. When they see a rainbow, they want to know if we can go touch it. When they see a deer outside in our front yard they run to the window and shriek in excitement, as if they had never seen a deer before. The logical spin that children put on the most ordinary situations and/or objects somehow makes these things extraordinary.
Having my children has brought me back to life, in the sense that the world is full of beauty, wonder and adventure even on an average day. Because of my children life has become so much more meaningful. I can recall when I was a child looking at something and thinking a world of possibilities lays in front of me and it never mattered what that object was meant to do, but what it could do for me.
I read a hub by Michael Ely called Listening To My Inner Child and it brought back to mind a thousand situations I placed myself in to make the ordinary day to day routine something worth remembering. This hub is dedicated to Michael Ely, a very talented and funny Huber who puts the excitement back into reading and writing for many of his followers and to Abigail and Collin, my extraordinary children who have brought my inner child back to life, making each day a new day to discover a world of possibilities.
Kid Stuff is the Best Stuff...
And the adventure began
At an age when ‘Peter Pan’ was my favorite movie and flying was my #1 goal in life, I often found myself in trouble for exploring possibilities and testing the limit of this world.
I think back now and wonder, what the heck was I thinking or how did I come up with that dumb idea. My many brilliant schemes, experiments and plans often resulted in the most unfavorable conclusions. My older sister rarely played with me, she had a tendency to avoided trouble at all cost, and trouble almost always found its way to me.
As I often did, I was sitting alone playing in the bedroom which I shared with my younger brother and sister. Barbie was driving her hot pink corvette and ‘glue head Ken’ (he was my one and only Ken doll, so when his head fell off his body, at the hand of my next door neighbor Mathew, I super glued it back on his body and affectionately named him, ‘Glue Head Ken’ ) was waiting at the office for Barbie to pick him up after work. On the way Barbie found herself in a predicament after hitting a stray ‘My Little Pony’ running across the road. Barbie must have been driving fast because ‘My Little Pony’ was thrown in the air and across the room. As I watched the toy glide ever so ungracefully threw the air, I caught glimpse of the ceiling fan hanging from the ceiling. Suddenly, nothing else mattered accept the idea that had just popped into my mind, ‘I was going to fly’!
There is so much potential during childhood
A test run first?
In my mind, it made perfect sense, Peter Pan had said that if we think ‘happy thoughts’, we can fly, we can fly, we can fly… I had been doing a lot of happy thinking, and it hadn't worked for me yet but with my new idea, I convinced myself I would be able to fly to the moon, or Never Land, that is…But first a test run.
I grabbed hold of my red haired cabbage patch kid, whom I had named Abby (yes, my daughter is named after that doll), and tied two shoe strings together and then around her. I put my Sesame Street table on top of the toy box which was filled with my Lego creations. I hopped onto the bed, carefully climbed onto the toy box and then up and onto the table. I pulled the first string hanging from the fan and suddenly it became dark, I pulled again, and thank God, the lights came back on. My distracted mind was temporarily fascinated by the strings ability to turn on and off the light, so I stood pulling that string turning the overhead lights on and off for 10 minutes before I refocused on my initial purpose…
Oh yes, flying… I reached for the second dangling string and pulled it twice. I watched the fan blades slowly come to a complete halt. PERFECT! I tied the shoelace to the fan and gently let go of Abby. I kissed her cheek and wished her luck before I once again pulled the string and turn the fan back on. The ceiling fan picked up speed quickly, and at my young age I had not planned ahead well enough to prepare a maneuver to quickly get out of the way of my flying doll. Abby came towards me at full throttle, knocking me off the table and onto the bed. She must have made 100 full circles around that room before the shoestring came loose and launched her across the room knocking the mini blinds off the window.
After the crash, I stood still and in silence staring at the door to my room, waiting for my mother to come up yelling and screaming, “What did you do now”?But she didn't.
I was thrilled with the results… To me, Abby being launched across the room was close enough to flying to encourage my next decision.
I ran across the room, first slipping on the pink corvette that Barbie was still in; probably regaining her cool after hitting that crazed ‘My Little Pony’. I pushed the car from my path and picked up Abby to ensure she was alright. I looked around the room for the shoe strings for about 10 minutes before locating them under the mini blinds. I tried to tie the shoe strings around me, but I was not able to get the knot out. Rather than sit attempting to unknot the laces, I found the next best thing, my older sister’s jump rope. PERFECT! It was a perfect fit around my torso! I climbed back on the bed, onto the Lego filled toy box and up onto my Sesame Street Table with the jump rope ends tailing behind me. I turned off the ceiling fan once again before I tied the ends of the rope to the fan. With a quick glance at Abby, I began to think of nothing but candy, summer, toys and grandma. Without hesitation I closed my eyes, turned on the ceiling fan and threw myself into the open air in a ‘Swan Dive’ like move.
I didn’t quite fly that day; in fact, my swan dive moment was followed by the entire ceiling fan (and part of the ceiling), plummeting to the ground as I made my way to the floor. Unfortunately, my mother did hear that second crash and in return I received a punishment of no TV and no Nintendo for a month. My father repaired the ceiling, but replaced the fan with a single light fixture. My adventure that day kept my parents from allowing me to have another ceiling fan in my room. It was not until I was 16 years old that I would be trusted enough to resist my temptations to fly threw the air.
Find a little time to...
Although I fell rather than flew, I will never forget that adventure, and the way it felt to be a child in a world which was free of limitations. As a child, gravity, physics and all things of that nature, didn’t exist yet. What existed was gold at the end of the rainbow and staying up all night trying to catch the tooth fairy. As a child monsters hid under the bed, and I worried about Humpty Dumpty falling off of that wall. When I was a child that was my world, and it was magical. Now that I am grown and with two children of my own, I have been given some of that magical happiness back by having the opportunity to see the world through their eyes.
Don’t be in a rush for your kids to grow up, or to be more grown up than you already are. The world has so much serious issues to deal and cope with, we must encourage our children to enjoy the reality of the dream, before they are shown too much of the reality of this world.
Keeping our inner child alive and encouraging our children to have adventure, allowing them to be children is what hopes and dreams are truly made of… So for all the so called ‘Adults’ out there, I hope you still find time to chase fireflies and wish on shooting stars, and maybe find a way to fly…
Life is constantly changing, but we must hold onto what is important as we grow
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