For Stella’s sixth birthday, her grandfather gave her a swing set. For anyone that knows Stella, her energy is endless. The swing set is such a blessing, we can now come home at the end of the day, instead of having to stop at a park to burn off energy. We can just be.
Every time I watch Stella play, I am amazed by her strength and grace, her desire to challenge her skills and her iron will. She is always trying something new, especially on the monkey bars, her favorite part of the swing set. And if she can’t get it the first time, she does not give up. She keeps trying until she can find a way to achieve her goal.
I love swinging. And while my intentions are to do some gardening while Stella is playing in the yard, 9 times out of 10, I end up playing on the swing set with her. I admit, climbing into the fort or going down the slide are fun (even if I feel like a giant), but the swings by far are my favorite.
I honestly could swing for hours. There is something about the act of swinging that makes me feel free, calm and youthful. It takes me back to my childhood, when life was carefree and I lived in my imagination.
Sometimes, while swinging, Stella and I close our eyes and pretend we are on roller coasters. Or we are swinging over the ocean.
Our yard is surrounded by big pine trees. One day, while sitting on a swing, I looked straight up. At that moment, the sky seemed endless, and I realized just how small we really are on this earth. How magnificent nature is and how lucky we are to be surrounded by such beauty.
With the swing set in our backyard, Stella can be free to use her imagination without having to worry about the influence of others. My hope for her is that she will use her swing set as her refuge for many years to come and build many great memories.
But right now, today, it has been not only a toy for her, but for me as well. And has helped me to cope with the stress of the daily routine, and given me the ability to press pause in the endless whirlwind of life.
When I was swinging with my daughter today, I looked over to see her happy face, smiling and laughing at me. I am blessed with such a beautiful little girl and these are the memories I will treasure for the rest of my life.