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Archive for February, 2013

For 25 years I’ve been looking out of my office window, located on the third floor of a four-storey brick medical building. I’ve angled my chiropractic treatment table so that I can clearly absorb the view while I palpate, massage, and adjust patients. The scene outside the window is always the same. Each day brings a caravan of mothers and nannies to the park, with children eager to play on the swings, slides and rocking horses. This is Peter Pan Park, a green patch of heaven in the city, framed by giant old oak trees with low branches begging to be climbed.

On this particular day, all four swings are occupied, children’s legs pointing to the sky to seek momentum. A toddler supported by two strong female arms rocks gleefully on a red horse attached to a blue spring. Two little girls with plastic shovels and pails crouch over a mound of sand. A mom waits at the bottom of the slide while her son readies himself at the top.

It may seem unfathomable that this window could possible be a gift for my spirit. But every day it serves as a reminder to be playful. I am witness to the timelessness of life. Fifty-five years ago this “grown up” was that laughing child. There will always be children playing in this park to remind us that the simple things in life – a ball, bird, or tree – can spark curiosity, adventure, laughter, and delight. Children teach me to notice and appreciate little things – that the days are getting longer, the smell in the air after the rain, a woodpecker tapping on bark. There is a low lying oak branch so close to my window that I can see buds forming on it in the early spring. I still feel a wide-eyed excitement no matter how many times I witness the unfolding of the seasons

We all have an enchanted window to look out of every day – if not in reality, at least in our hearts and minds.

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Have you ever been lost in the woods and walked for what seemed like miles, only to find that you were still very close to where you started? Life is a lot like that; it takes us on a convoluted path that often circles back to our beginnings. Think about the things that you loved learning as a child or a teenager. Remember home economics class and attempting to sew your first dress? Learning to play chess? Clarinet lessons? Auto mechanics or art classes? Tapping into the activities that we used to love can be fun, playful and healing the second time around.

Reflect on the hobbies, sports, leisure, and creative activities that you loved to do.  What did you give up when life got in the way? What have you been promising to do “one of these days” or “when I have more time”? What talents and gifts have you buried or abandoned because you’re not a kid any more? When you were a child, what did you dream of becoming when you grew up? Go back to what you loved to do! When you start retrieving memories and fragments of your childhood passions, a door will open to Rekindlegarten (a term I created to describe rekindling our childhood). Inside you’ll find a world where anything is possible — you just have to try it!

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