When did we lose our fearlessness?

We recently took our annual visit to the beach with some of my favorite people.  It is always a great, relaxing, joyful time, but this year was special, as it was our 19 month old granddaughter Lillian’s first time at the ocean. 

Watching her, approach this experience as she approaches every experience, I kept being struck by her fearlessness. 

The first day into the ocean she was tentative, but curious.  She wanted to go in, but she wanted you right there to hold her hands and pick her up when a big wave came her way.   As the day went on and she had more experience with the waves she became braver and didn’t even mind if she got water in her face 

The second day came and she was even braver and seemed to want to go further into the ocean with you at her side holding her hands.  She experienced total joy with every big wave that came her way.

By the third day, she would take off running toward the ocean with no one holding her hand and we had to run after her to keep her safe.  Total fearlessness!

I felt exhilarated watching her and kept wondering.  Were we all like that when we were that young?  When does the fear come in?  Is it because her parents are so great about letting her explore and test her boundaries without always being afraid and overly cautious? 

It is such a mystery to me! She has become my teacher and she inspires me to go toward new adventures and opportunities with the same fearlessness.

This is what I learned from Lillian.

  •  Follow your curiosity, even if it is a little scary
  • Keep someone you trust at your side to hold your hand as you explore
  • Test your boundaries and see how far you can go
  • Fall down and get right back up and keep going
  • Enjoy the newness of the experience
  • Take off on your own as your confidence grows.

What a way to live your life! We can all learn something from a fearless 19 month old.  Thank you Lillian, Mimi loves you so much

What do you think?  Did we have it and lose it along the way?  How are you getting it back in your life?