This I Believe

ashley - Rootstown, Ohio
Entered on May 9, 2007

Don’t Forget How to Climb Trees

Can you remember when you were a kid? Playing in the sand, spinning in circles until you fall, and falling out of the trees. What happened to those times? Those times when bad days meant not getting to play outside because it was raining.

What happened? I’ll tell you. We entered the world of adulthood. We stopped asking all those questions we used to ask when we were little because we had all the answers. We stopped climbing trees because we didn’t think it was that important.

Well I just have one thing to say. It is important. Have you ever climbed a tree before? Not when you were a kid but when you were considered an adult? No. Well you should try it.

I remember when I was eighteen and it was Friday night. I thought I might go outside to write a song, because it was so pretty and warm. I have this big tree in my backyard. I started walking around it to see how I could climb it. I was planning to sit on one of the branches and write a song. I had not climbed a tree in years and that’s the reason I was wearing flip-flops.

Then I found the perfect spot. I put my foot into the crevice and started climbing. I have the worst upper body strength, so it took me forever to pull myself up. When I got to the low part of the tree I started to look around for a branch. Finally I found one, so I grabbed onto it and started to climb it. While I was climbing I realized I was afraid of heights. I was so afraid of falling that I dropped my song book. Well that plan was shot down.

After I got over the fear of falling I looked up at sky. It was so beautiful, seeing the night sky. I never really had the time to look at it before. I felt happy, excited, and terrified all at the same time. But most of all I felt courage.

After I was done gazing I went down the tree and wrote an amazing song. But that’s not the point of the story. The point is we are growing up so fast that some of us can’t take the time to enjoy what we have. We have so little time on this beautiful planet. We just keep on following our daily routine and nothing seems to satisfy us.

I know you might be too old for truth or dare but just give it a try. Go outside at night and climb a tree. If you live in the city, take the elevator to the roof of a building. Or just get upon your roof if you are afraid of trees. When you have a nice place to sit, look up at the stars. You’ll start to realize how small you are.

I know this will not be the same because you forgot how you used to look at the world. And yes I realize you may not always have the time. But just don’t forget how to be a kid. Ask those questions nobody dares to ask. Play in the sand instead of getting a tan. And climb those trees that only kids would climb.