This I Believe

Richard - Lafayette, Indiana
Entered on July 27, 2006
Age Group: 30 - 50

This I Believe

Growing up as a child I remember long summer days with “nothing to do”. I remember sitting on the porch with a few of the other neighborhood kids saying things like “What do you want to do?” or “We do that all the time”, and of course “There’s nothing to do”. I remember my mom yelling at us to “get out of the house and go do something outside”, and although it seemed like it was boring back then, they are some of the best memories I have of growing up.

I learned a lot of life lessons during those boring summer days and had a lot of firsts. I met my first girlfriend, I got in to my first and only fist fight of my life, and I made friends that, to this day 28 years later, are still some of my best.

Because of this fact, I believe that a kid should have the chance to be “bored” and to lay on the porch or in the lawn asking his or her friends what they want to do next. To ride their bikes for no other reason than to just ride, or to play a game of pick-up baseball or football in someone’s yard or even in the street.

Organized sports have their place, and are great, but there is something to be said for free, unstructured time!

Now I’ve grown older, with kids of my own, and as I’m yelling at them to quit running in and out of the house, as I am gathering their things to shuttle them off to gymnastics or to swim lessons, I think back about how great it was to have “nothing to do”. I believe that those days are important. I believe that those days are lost far too quickly and too easily, and I believe that for today, we are going to skip gymnastics and I’m going to let my kids be “bored”.