My daughter has a memory problem. She doesn’t forget anything. But then again, show me a woman who does, especially if it’s something to her benefit. So when I suggested taking her and Daniel to MOSI – the Museum of Science and Industry- I might as well have etched the commitment into a stone tablet.
They both have been to MOSI several times, and they just love the open learn/play areas available. We trekked on over, opened the doors to the lobby, and found ourselves in a sea of humanity. The line just to buy tickets was about 45 minutes long. I knew this would be another ‘gotta’ get out of this delicately’ situations. The lateness of the afternoon and other commitments did not allow for us to invest so much time in line, and I knew we would not be able to spend as much time at MOSI as we had hoped.
So after engraving in stone an obligation to bring them back some other day, we left. We dilly-dallied for a while in the large, open area just outside the main doors of MOSI. Then we took turns balance walking the curb on the way to the parking lot. We got sidetracked by some large rocks they just had to climb, and then decided to follow a trail of brink pavers to see where it lead. It lead us to a majestic oak tree, its trunk split in diagonal fashion, thus allowing for easy climbing. I held their hands as I encouraged them to venture out along the horizontal limb that hung about 4 feet off the ground.
After taking time to sit on limbs and have them jump down into my arms, we found ourselves playing in a pool of fallen leaves. Where we still in Florida? The wind was sharp, the weather cold, and there we were kicking and rustling and laughing as the brown leaves crunched underneath our feet. I even convinced Daniel to lie down as Natalie and I buried him under the fallen foliage.
“Has it really been an hour and a half since we walked out of MOSI?” I couldn’t believe it. We were having so much fun, time just flew by. Natalie had forgotten that we didn’t get to go inside. Instead, she was smiling and laughing and doing what I believe all kids should do; playing outdoors and just being a kid. I could see the sense of wonder in her eyes. This was in sharp contrast to Daniel who just reeks of determination and adventure in everything he does. You could feel him thinking, “I can climb that. I can jump that.” Daniel is like a walking Adidas ad; Impossible is Nothing.
There is a saying that has really put into perspective the recent trials and tribulations of my life. “There are only three answers God gives you when you make a request of Him. Yes, not now, and I have something greater planned for you.” We were supposed to go to the museum. Instead, we spent time in our own world of discovery and learning. One that was not behind closed walls with crowds of people. One in which we did not have to stand in line or wait our turn. God had something greater planned for Natalie, Daniel and myself that day, and He gave it to us in such a simple and beautiful manner.
This experience was as spiritual for me as it was rewarding. Again, I found myself hoping these are the times my kids remember once they grow up and reflect on their childhood. Again I reminded myself that even though times get tough, I am so very, very blessed.
There is another saying that is relevant to my life – all of our lives, actually. “Change is constant.” I believe this to be true. However, I would like to take creative liberty and offer a variation to this phrase. “There are two things in life which are constant. Change and God. And it is God that guides us through all the changes in our lives.”