A Bet­ter World Is Through a Child’s Eyes

The Hamilton Spectator - - OUR PULSE - LAUREN DIVINCENZO, GRADE 11 Self-Por­trait, oil on can­vas, by Erica Pierce, Grade 12

At what point in our lives is the line be­tween be­liev­ing like a child and see­ing like an adult crossed? Did we ever cross it, or have we just con­vinced our­selves that we have? While adult­hood is of­ten seen as an end to the joy of child­hood, this can be chal­lenged with the idea that we never truly lose our child­like imag­i­na­tion and cu­rios­ity, that it is still within us. Thus, the world would be a much bet­ter place if ev­ery per­son changed his or her way of think­ing to that of a child.

It is not un­com­mon for peo­ple to think their life was much bet­ter as a child. We tend to stop chas­ing our dreams - we get dis­cour­aged and set­tle for what is com­fort­able. As chil­dren, we dream of be­ing bal­leri­nas, mu­si­cians, and fire­fight­ers, but we reach a point where we dis­miss these dreams as crazy and fic­tional. Our big goals grow smaller and far­ther away with ev­ery pass­ing year, and we sur­ren­der to the safe life path that so­ci­ety pro­vides us. Ad­di­tion­ally, we as­so­ciate grow­ing up with a more stress­ful and mo­not­o­nous life. For kids, the lit­tle things are al­ways ob­served and ques­tioned. The world is their play­ground, whereas as grown ups we are too stressed and in rou­tines to ob­serve the world around us. Fur­ther­more, as we age, we make far more mis­takes in the way we treat oth­ers. The aver­age child is taught and be­lieves that every­one must be treated with re­spect. Prej­u­dice is most of­ten ab­sent in chil­dren, while it is far more com­mon for adults to cheat, com­mit crimes, and judge oth­ers. Many be­come hos­tile and judge­men­tal within their re­la­tion­ships as they be­come adults, and the in­no­cent love for all is lost. Child­hood, over­all, is of­ten looked upon as a bet­ter time, and this brings us down in our older years.

Our think­ing that our bet­ter life is gone is un­nec­es­sary: we do not have to lose the joy of be­ing a child. If we be­gin to view and ex­e­cute our goals as we did as chil­dren, we will find that they are more ac­ces­si­ble. Kids don’t hes­i­tate to dream big, and they don’t take no for an an­swer. They think cre­atively to solve reg­u­lar prob­lems, and could achieve even more with the re­sources that we have when we get older. If we uti­lize our cur­rent knowl­edge and re­sources with the mind­set of a child, we can be­come suc­cess­ful in our big­gest goals. In ad­di­tion to this, our world will be­come much less stress­ful and far more com­pelling if we slow down and view it with child­like cu­rios­ity. If we be­gin to ap­pre­ci­ate what is usu­ally ig­nored, step back from our ro­botic rou­tines, and imag­ine the world be­yond our bound­aries, we will ac­cess the world we played in as chil­dren. More­over, our bonds and re­la­tion­ships will greatly im­prove if we elim­i­nate the clouded judge­ment that time has given us. Chil­dren are born with­out prej­u­dice, and most of­ten treat their peers with the kind­ness and equal­ity that they are taught. If we as­pire to think this way again, we can be­gin to elim­i­nate the prob­lems that, to a child, would be un­think­able. Cheat­ing, com­mit­ting crime, dis­crim­i­na­tion, and so many more things could be re­placed with strong con­nec­tions, kind­ness, and re­spect for all. All of these ideas are well within our reach, as we never lose our child­like think­ing; we just for­get how to use it.

Chang­ing our way of think­ing can truly re­verse the idea that we have lost our qual­ity of life with age. The kid within ev­ery one of us can be use­ful in mak­ing our lives just as ex­cit­ing and en­joy­able now as they were at a sim­pler time. If you miss how life was as a child, you only need to open your eyes – a sim­ply happy life is still within reach.

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