There are so many rules and judgments in today’s society. Do this, don’t do that, you’re messing up. Especially as a parent there is so much pressure to “parent the right way” when really there is no right way. It’s the most discouraging thing to have another mom look at me with disappointment or disgust or disagreement or whatever negative emotion they are putting off when my child acts out, especially when I’m trying to do this whole parent thing to the very best of my abilities. I think we forget that while it is our job as parents to help guide our children, we also need to let kids interact as kids. As long as no one is getting hurt of course.
Being in a secluded, natural setting is my favorite way to let my kids be kids. It’s so nice to have all of the pressures of parenting fall away and just be able to enjoy the moment. No worries about them being too loud, or too rough, or too hyper, or too dirty. When we are alone a trail, Little Lady can play in the dirt without anyone insinuating that she’s getting too dirty. When Little Big Guy runs around like a crazy person, no one looks at him like he’s too wild. My kids can explore in their own way without the judgments of our society. I do think it is important to teach our children manners and how to act in public, but at the same time I think it’s so important to just let them be. Let them be wild, and young and free. Let them learn the rules of the world on their own terms through their own experiences.
It’s a nice break for me too. The only worry I have is keeping my kids safe. I don’t have to think about the clothes I’m wearing, or if my hair looks nice enough or if we’re being intrusive to people around us. I just get to be. I just get to take it all in. I get to enjoy the looks of discovery on my kid’s faces. There’s nothing better than these quiet moments for me. They’re full of relaxation instead of pressure, freedom instead of constraint.
I’m envious of the seemingly carefree people who can go through life without caring what others think of them. I’ve always cared, probably a little too much, and there is no shortage of people who think they’ve figured out the best way to live their life and think everyone should do it to. In the media, at work, at school, everywhere people have expectations of you. But in nature you get to follow your expectations for yourself. The trees, the air, the sun, the water, they don’t care about what you’re doing or how you’re doing it. So get out there, let go of the world’s expectations and enjoy an everyday adventure.