Walking Home Takes Forever


Most sunny days I like to pick up the bigger kids from school on foot. It's nice for them to decompress in the fresh air before starting homework. The only challenge is, walking home takes forever.

They want to touch flowers, hunt for perfect sticks, squabble about who gets to ride in the stroller, pet their favorite neighborhood cat and on and on. 

People we pass comment about how slow we are. I'm almost always antsy, prompting them to go faster.

But these walks - with all their sticks and colors - are some of the best moments of childhood. And for me they're like an Oprah Lifeclass on living in the present. Eckhart Tolle would say: 

As soon as you honor the present moment, all unhappiness and struggle dissolve, and life begins to flow with joy and ease. When you act out the present-moment awareness, whatever you do becomes imbued with a sense of quality, care, and love - even the most simple action.
— The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle

So unsurprisingly, childcare offers another opportunity for growth. A chance to practice presence. Not only to the benefit of the kids whose little brains are buzzing with development from the sensory and relational experiences they have during these (albeit long) walks home but to us, who are changed when we give in to the pace of childhood and notice "the now" for all that it has to offer.