As is the case with most children, I was and continue to be a massive fan of exploration and discovering new things. Though looking back to when I was a child, the sense of danger and wonder was phenomenal. As you grow older, you see things through a variety of lenses depending on your life experiences – you may see things through rose-tinted glasses or glasses with darker and gnarlier tint. When I was a child, I saw things through danger-tinted glasses.
I would frantically scamper around the quarry, exploring areas away from the beaten path with my friends whilst trying to escape from these fantastic imaginary perils (admittedly coming close to falling down hills and facing very real perils). When thinking back to the imaginary perils that we faced, it’s easy to assume that inspiration was taken from all of the action movies we had seen over our brief years, with cliffs falling and rocks sliding and floods rushing towards us and quite frankly it provided some of the best early-years experiences I could have asked for.
To severely limit the scampering of a child is to limit their imagination and their sense of wonder regarding the world around them. Thinking back to my days of roaming the wilds and new lands, if I had a voice telling me to not do it I would have been distraught! Whilst it is natural to be wary of how children interact with their surroundings it is also obvious to me that without that level of curiosity and imagination, this child is missing out on a wealth of experience that comes with the perception of perils.
My sister will soon be bringing a baby into this world and one of my wishes for that child is to be safe, whilst feeling as if there are no bounds to what can be conjured in their mind. Reality is our shared perception of the world around us. Wouldn’t it be nice to warp that reality whilst we are able?