I don’t know exactly why my daughter-in-law, Kelsi’s breathtaking videos make me so antsy. Is it the distant childhood lost that I ache for or is it a future full of possibilities? Perhaps it’s a combination of both.
Some of the scenes make me gasp in their danger.
I remember watching 5-year-old Brian climb a 50 foot pine tree shortly after we moved to Colorado. My heart pounded in my chest as I watched the flash of his red sweatshirt moving up that tree.
“This is as high as I can go!” he called. “The branches get too skinny higher up.” He was sitting about 3 feet from the top of the swaying tree.
“What can you see from up there?” I called.
“I can see Pikes Peak!”
“Can you see the Air Force Academy?”
“No. Just forest.”
Just then Jeff came home from work. He kissed me on the front porch. “Look at that little red squirrel up in that tree,” I pointed.
“Don’t yell at him. He’s proud that he got up so high. If you act scared, it might scare him.”
“Look at how that tree is swaying. Do you think he’s okay?”
“His instincts tell him to hang on.”
“Be careful up there,” Jeff called. “Maybe you’d better come down now. It’s almost time for dinner.”
Secretly, I envied him his perch at the top of that pine tree. He’d have pitch on his clothes and his hands, and he have the fresh, piney smell in his hair. He may have a scrape or two. I was too pregnant, to dignified, too old I thought.
I feel an upswell of the joy for their revel in the beauty and wonder of this earth.
Brian and Kelsi spent last summer as tour guides in Juneau Alaska. Brian has a degree in Political Science and a minor in geography. Kelsi has a degree in anthropology. They are oriented to walking on the wild side. Sometimes embracing the impractical.
And I’m realizing something about growing old. I have less to lose now. Now that there are no little children clinging to my leg asking if it’s dinner time, I empathize more with Mary than with Martha of Jesus’ hosts.
Maybe just now, I’m old enough to appreciate the vastness and splendor of nature.
Here. Revel with us!