I’m not very good with uncertainty.
In fact, I hate it.
To the point that I read the last page of every book first, before I even begin I see what happens at the end.
(Yes. I really do this. With every single book I read. Always have. Always will.)
I like to know the end from the beginning.
I need to know that everything will be ok. That things will turn out as they should and that the good guys will win.
This compulsive need sometimes makes raising my children hard…especially at this time of year with back to school.
How will Simon do this year? What will his teachers be like? Will he still love recess? Will he still have good friends? Will there be bullies? AND then there’s the whole issue of Grace going off to kindergarten…Will she make friends? Will the other girls be nice to her? Will she have a good teacher? Will she learn to say her L sounds? Will I survive having her gone for a few hours every day? And what will Ruth do with both of her buddies gone?
So much uncertainty.
Yesterday I was watching Simon and Grace out the window. They were in the backyard where Simon has a full blown mining operation going on. (He happened upon a few episodes of Gold Rush on Netflix and now he’s hooked on finding gold.)
Currently he has both kiddie pools set up for the washing of dirt and rocks and for the panning of gold. He also built a make shift shaker and all of our Frisbee’s are loaded with silt waiting to be panned. Then there is our smallest flower bed back that is now a giant water filled pit that he is calling “The Glory Hole”.
Sure, it’s a mess…a big one…but I love it. Little boys need a project, a messy, dirty, outdoor project. So I’ve been letting him work on it for days now. And he’s happy.
He also says that he knows what he’s doing because he learned all about it when my dad took Simon and Grace panning for gold last year at Knott’s Berry Farm.
Panning for gold is my absolute favorite thing to do at Knott’s Berry Farm…I loved doing it as a kid and I loved watching my kids having fun with it as an adult. And the best part is that there you always leave with a tiny vial of gold…no matter what everyone leaves a successful miner.
(I didn’t know this as a kid but I know it now…it made me smile to watch the “miner guide” reloading my kids pans to make sure they still had treasure after all their vigorous shaking of the pans.)
So yesterday I’m watching Simon dig and sift and wash and sift and pan and sort and collect.
(No gold…but crystals and other treasures.)
Working and working and anticipating that he would find something marvelous.
Later last night Simon came running in with a handful of dirty coins…he’d scored in the glory hole!!!
What on earth?
And then I heard my husband slip back in the front door and I knew the money had been planted.
We both ooed and ahhhed over the coins and listened to his theory of how they must have been dropped there years ago and then buried when our house was built. It was a great theory and we let him go with it. That night as we tucked him into bed he was still talking about how his hard work was paying off and what he planned to do in the morning with his operation.
He fell asleep a successful miner.
Why can’t I be more like Simon?
He set to work on a project, not knowing what would happen, trusting what he’d “learned”, and anticipating that something wonderful would happen…and it did…even if what he found wasn’t exactly what he was looking for.
At the beginning of this year I am going to try my best to be more like that—-just jump right into school and anticipate the best.
I’m going to try to sort through all my fears and uncertainty and work on finding treasure…everyday…and trust that if I need a little extra help someone will be there to help me with what I need.
I’m not going to change how I read books but I am going to try to just anticipate the best this year instead of stressing out over all the what ifs and uncertainty…
Heaven knows I could use a good night of sleep as a “successful miner” instead of a worried mother.