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Lessons Learned from a Child’s Moment of Delight

June 6th, 2020 by Michael Dyet

Hmmm, where better to turn for perspective than the eyes of a child?

It has been a troubling week. COVID-19 and the restrictions around it continue to weigh heavy on us. News that several major retail corporations have filed for bankruptcy, in part because of the COVID-19 lockdown, gives us more cause for concern about the state of the economy.

The unfortunate highlight, or perhaps I should say lowlight, of the week was the shocking case of George Floyd’s death and the police officers involved. The violent protests across the U.S. and Canada stirred the already boiling pot.

We all deal with stress differently. One of my tactics is the comfort of routine. My daily work at home routine includes 15 minute walks mid-morning and mid-afternoon and a 30 to 40 minute walk around the neighbourhood at the end of the day. Structure keeps me sane.

These walks also give me time to observe human behaviour. It is very much a mixed bag out there these days.

On the one hand, some people are getting back to normal. Sitting on their porches drinking coffee and reading the newspaper. Talking their dog for a walk, or letting their dog walk them, as the case may be. Teaching their kids to ride a bicycle. Doing home improvement projects.

On the other hand, distrustful people still peer out their windows with displeasure as if I am being irresponsible being outdoors. I have seen people wearing a face mask while cutting their grass or just stepping out to pick up the newspaper. Hand-made do not enter if… signs are still plastered on store doors and windows.

We are still a society divided at present. But earlier I witnessed a scene that brought a smile to my face and gave me hope for our collective consciousness.

A young father was washing his car using a spray gun attached to a garden hose. His daughter, who appeared to be 3 or 4 years of age, was intent on getting in on the act as young children do to stay at the center of their parents’ lives.

The father paused a moment to send a spray of water over his daughter. The child shrieked in delight, giggled, toddled away on her small legs, and then came back for more. Another spray of water, another shriek and giggle. Another retreat and return. I could not help but smile and be reassured at the heartwarming scene.

I do not know how much the child understands about COVID-19 and its impact. She may be too young to fully grasp what is happening. But at the same time, she is likely aware that things are not quite normal. But she is not letting the situation dampen her spirits. We can take valuable lessons in the current environment from this carefree child.

Lesson: Take pleasure in the simple things. Lesson: Live fully in the moment. Lesson: Have faith that life is essentially good and can be trusted to see us through today. Lesson: Tomorrow is a day away and not to be worried about until it arrives.

So let us take delight in the simple moments. They may be fleeting. But if we string such moments together, they become a treasured necklace we can wear to carry us through the trying days when life is not so kind.

Now Available Online from Amazon, Chapters Indigo or Barnes & Noble: Hunting Muskie, Rites of Passage – Stories by Michael Robert Dyet

~ Michael Robert Dyet is also the author of Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel which was a double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at .

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