While walking my dog today around the loop at Seneca Park, we passed several young parents with their preschool children at the playground. As we approached the slide, a small boy struggled to walk up the steepest part of the slide near the top. As hard as he tried, hands gripping the sides, he kept sliding back down. He couldn’t quite make it on his own those last couple of feet.
Fortunately, his dad was standing by. When Dad saw that the boy couldn’t make it all the way on his own, he put his hand on the boy’s bottom and gave him just enough support and a nudge so that the boy could then climb the rest of the way. It was a simple, instinctive gesture that I’m sure is repeated by moms and dads every day wherever playground and back yard slides exist.
From that simple event that took but seconds, there are several life lessons that come to mind:
- It’s good to tackle challenges that stretch you to capacity, even if you don’t make it all the way on your own;
- It’s OK to accept a helping hand from others when needed;
- It’s good and kind to help others achieve their dreams and goals;
- If you’re too wrapped up in your own world, you might miss a ready opportunity to help someone else.
I am thankful that in the simplest of passing moments we can be reminded of truths that are timeless. So to that anonymous dad and his young boy, thank you for leap year lesson #256: Tackle big dreams and help others achieve theirs.