I will be flat out lying if I said my boys, just two years apart, get along all the time. Sometimes it’s a daily war over the littlest things.
Part of it is that they are so different from each other. One goes fast, the other slow. One likes bold flavors… the other, nothing but vanilla. “I want a different brother!!!” I have heard this one too many times.
They do love being together, but sometimes, they are together so much… peace and sanity allude us all.
So this past Saturday, my husband and I felt we could all use some “fresh air.” In an attempt to help our kids feel less homesick and to start actually “liking” our new home in Texas, we thought it would be fun to explore a nature park just fifteen minutes away from where we live.
This is kind of nice, I thought to myself, as we drove up the gentle graveled hills lined with bare trees.
But all I could hear were groans and sighs in the backseat. “What’s there to do here anyway?” one of my boys asked.
My husband parked the car. “How about this path?”
Truthfully, it wasn’t much of a path – kind of flat, muddy, and surrounded by thin, leafless trees.
But then, a few minutes down the trail, my boys discovered this ravine – this ditch, really. And it was all covered in roots and thorny things. Their eyes LIT up. “We wanna go down there!”
My husband nodded yes to them.
“I wanna go too!” my little girl pleaded.
“Noooo, stay here- it’s dangerous,” I told her.
So together, the boys raced to the ditch. My older one skidded down the ravine without hesitation. But then he looked back and realized his brother wasn’t with him. “C’mon!” he said.
His younger brother looked eager but scared. He shakily knelt down in the dirt and looked down. “Dude, I can’t do this.”
“C’mon!” his brother urged, with a mix of excitement and impatience. He instinctively reached back up and carefully took his brother’s hand. “You can do it!”
And for the next thirty minutes (but it felt like fifteen hours as I stood there shivering in the cold), they had the best time ever.
Yes, the best time ever.
I hadn’t seen them this happy in a long time.
It reminded me of all the times they stomped and romped so carefree in our backyard back in California.
Somehow, it was like together, they found a piece of home again on this trail.
If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. ~ African proverb
At eleven and nine years old, they still have a world of things to learn… seriously, one of them still needs to learn how to ride a bike. 😁
But maybe, just maybe, they are learning that although there’s a lot about life they can’t choose…
there is still so much about it that they can.