What If our children ruled the world?
We have lived in our smallish town house, in our quiet, safe suburb for three years now. In that three years we have added two beautiful boys to our family and have seen some fairly memorable neighbours come and go (you can read more about them in my October 2013 post titled ‘Noisy Neighbours…including how one of them got the nickname ‘sheets’). We have also had many neighbours who have been here living just metres away from us since the very beginning whom I still wouldn’t recognize from a bar of soap if I saw them in them at the shops. This was until last week. I cannot take credit for this, this didn’t happen because of me the ‘adult’ but because of the actions of my two little boys, ‘The Children’. The ones we say have a lot to learn from us ‘The Adults’.
Isn’t it terrible that after three years of living literally next door it has taken until now to have a proper chat with our neighbours? Not that I haven’t tried. When we first moved in I would regularly try and befriend our immediate next door neighbour, who still to this day will unashamedly pretend she hasn’t seen me when we pass on the path and who I have caught quickly running into the house when we pull up the driveway (Yes crazy lady…I have seen you and know what you are up to!) who knows why? Maybe my husband is right and she has heard me calling her by her nickname ‘sheets’. So I sort of just gave up, If they couldn’t be bothered then I wouldn’t keep trying either.
The shame of all this was that the neighbours had children too. When we first moved in my boys were little, but now they are old enough to stand at the fence, peeking through the gaps as the neighbourhood kids ride up and down the driveway shouting out in excitement. They are still that little bit too young to go outside without me, so last week I turned to my eldest and said ‘ do you want to go out?’ He was so excited, and ran to the gate. He is a shy child and I guess in new social situations, I am shy too, but luckily his little baby brother was there to break the ice.
Within minutes he was running up and down the street squealing with laughter. The older girl from a few doors down was walking around with my youngest on her hip and later asked if she could take the boys in to meet her mum, who apparently loved babies. Feeling a little bit awkward I said yes….. and there you have it, it was that simple, of course it is normal to take a random child inside your home to meet your mum!………No over thinking, no over analysing- after 3 years we were talking to the neighbours. For the record she was lovely. She shared lots about herself in just a few short minutes and you could tell she was a good, loving and proud mum.
My eldest hasn’t stopped talking about our meeting since and keeps asking when we are going to play with our friends again. I must admit I am a little embarrassed that we hadn’t done it sooner and that it took children to break down our barriers. You see children look at the world simply. They don’t see the awkwardness that we see, they don’t hold grudges, they forgive freely, and they make friends easily…because through the eyes of a child….if we talk and play nicely just once, then we are best friends.
This got me to thinking about how when it comes to living and being part of society, maybe the kids have this stuff right, and we have it all wrong? It is only when adults start to interfere with their pure, untainted ideologies that things start to fall apart for them.
So If our children ruled the world then maybe ……………………………
Friends could be made with just a smile and a shared ride on a scooter.
After a big tantrum, we could just have a nap and all the mean words that were shared would be forgotten when we both woke up.
Any injury or hurt feeling ever caused in the world could be fixed with a Peppa Pig Band Aid and a magic kiss.
Hugs and I love you’s are all we would need to start the day, not 6 strong lattes before lunchtime.
Self esteem would be based on who had the best Thomas the Tank Engine Tshirt…not on who was the skinniest or more most beautiful on the playground.
If someone took too long at the ATM we could just push them out of the way and say ‘ My Turn’.
When food was absolute rubbish at our favourite restaurants we could just throw it on the floor in disgust and then a new option would magically appear in front of us- no questions asked.
When we’d had a big day, someone would just pick us up while we were kicking and screaming and put us to bed.
We would talk to more strangers, and smile back when someone noticed our beautiful puffy cheeks.
We would also be a hell of a lot more honest. If someone farted, we would have more people claiming them proudly and cheering after.
When we noticed a loved one putting on weight we could just slap them on the belly and say ‘baby?’
I think If kids ruled the world, we could just learn a thing or two.
P.s ‘Sheets’ still lives next door……..and still continues to hide, maybe I should send the boys over!