Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Walking Wednesday--Instead of Walking

I think there is a real danger in committing too strongly to some things. Those things not spelled out to last forever, or for lifetimes, may be seasonal. Even marriage and parenthood and faith-walking are seasonal, after all, going through heady, wonderful seasons which wane into wearier, darker, more determined seasons. Those seasons waxing to brightness again.

Such has been the case with daily walking and Nature Walk Wednesdays. Sometimes we just don't feel like walking every day. Sometimes we don't feel like going outside.

Yesterday was such a day. Though the weather was warmer and the mist had stopped, going on a walk just wasn't the most appealing way to spend our time. But I forced it. Simon was glad to ride his handle bike. George was glad to get out after his recovery, or as much of it as we can handle. Abigail once outside wanted to build snowmen and women and children and dogs. And, me, I wanted to be inside working through the to-do list I just finished making.

But I forced it. Abigail lagged behind dragging a stick through the snow, and asking us to wait for her. I grew impatient with Simon's constant chatter, George's incessant pulling, and Abigail's passive-aggressive pokeyness. Yesterdays adherence to the determined schedule of our days did nothing but set us up to avoid each other for the remainder of the day. So much for the benefits of being outside.

Here's the thing . . . I want my children outside! More than I want them to walk, I want them to be outside
noticing the way the seasons change their world
feeling the earth
understanding the proclamation of goodness give by creation's Creator.
I want them to enjoy the out-of-doors. 

Taking their dog on a walk and feeding their pets, those are important things to do, promoting stewardship and responsibility. But sometimes all that responsibility becomes a burden and a law and a tradition stealing the very thing I most want out of daily walks.

So today, we bundled up. They built a snow village while I logged my faithfulness minutes and cleaned the drive way. We checked on the rabbits, ran with the dog, and made a date for a snowball fight. I forgot to take pictures.

We came in to learn and to play and eat tomato soup. There will be time for walking another day; today we just needed the enjoyment of being out of the house with one another. 

Incidentally, I believe that a two-against-one snowball fight should count as aerobic exercise, especially when the snow-village-building-time became make-ahead-snowball time. My goodness.

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