The Lesson a 5 Year Old Taught Us


The Lesson a 5 Year Old Taught Us

Have you ever people watched? I do all the time. Not in a creepy-standing-outside-of-your-window way. I love to decipher people, how they function, their expressions, sometimes people watching is like a mirror, it helps you discover yourself through others. Other times it teaches you lessons, this time a 5 year-old taught me one or a few.

I was sitting at a park in front of the water, between me and the water was a pathway. Most people passing by were either jogging, walking their dogs or couples strolling by. Except for a 5 year-old and his dad. The boy was learning how to ride his bike without training wheels. At the beginning his dad couldn’t let him go at all or he would immediately collapse but as time passed he was able to let go of him a little more and more and more. The boy fell countless times, too many for me to keep up with. The first few times he cried, but his dad kept encouraging him. He fell so many times that he wouldn’t even feel it anymore, he would clean his knees, wipe his hands and get back on it again, each time more determined. After one hour he was finally able to ride for more than 20 seconds without falling, even though he fell at the end of the pathway he was proud and so was his dad, they celebrated because it was a victory; a small but meaningful one. After that he was motivated to keep trying even harder. One hour later, the boy finally got it. He wasn’t perfect of course, he was a bit wobbly, but he was finally riding alone without falling. And this was inspiring to me.

This boy taught me a lesson of resiliency. As a 26 year-old, life is the bike and I am the boy. I’m learning how to handle it but I am no expert. I will get hurt, I will get a few scratches but I will rise even stronger from them. I will try again and again and again and I’ll finally get it. You will too.

He also taught me that as much as we like to think we don’t need anyone in life. We actually do, we need someone to trust, someone who will always encourage us to keep going, someone to catch us when we fall. That could be a family member, a significant other or a friend. Love and support from that one person you can trust is crucial in life. When life gets wobbly they’ll be there to catch us. It is okay to need someone, it is okay to trust and love. As strong women we also need someone to help us, that is the beauty of being strong we know when we need others.

Lastly he taught me to celebrate even the smallest of victories. Because it is all about perspective. He kept focusing on his progress rather than his failures or perfection and this to him called for celebration. In life we sometimes focus on the negative instead of the positives when it should be the other way around. Progress is progress and this is always a cause for celebration. Allow yourself to be happy for the small victories.

Life isn’t easy, it was never meant to be. But it can surprise you when you take a moment to look around, outside of yourself. Let the lessons of this 5 year-old inspire you as well. Remember being strong doesn’t mean you need to be perfect, whenever you fall just try again.