|One of Ellie's favorite slides|
We went to Massanutten Water Park this week to celebrate the end of summer. Daddy and Jeff had been before, but this was the first time we thought Ellie was old enough to go.
Ellie is four. She is also quite tall. So tall, in fact, that it turned out she easily cleared the 42" height requirement for all the equipment there, and was allowed to do pretty much any water activity she wanted.
The girl announced the minute we got inside the Water Park she wanted to do all the big slides - and she did. By herself. Even though she'd never been there before and hadn't, as far as I know, ever done a water slide before. I was amazed.
At one point she tried to cross the Lily Pads in the outside pool - large foam "pads" that are tethered to the bottom of the pool but do float around some. People try to cross them by holding on to the net that hangs above the pads. Ellie couldn't reach the net, so her dad stood next to the pads to help her if needed. At one point she fell over and got upset, but she kept going, determined to get to the other side.
At lunch, I mentioned to her how proud I was of her for going on so many things, and how I couldn't believe she wasn't even nervous. "I was nerfous on da frog pads," she said. "Yes," I replied, "but you kept going."
Guess which thing she chose as the favorite last thing to do before we called it a day? The frog lily pads. The ones that had made her nervous and even made her cry. And here she was, willing to do it again. Wanting to do it again.
I can learn a thing or two from my daughter: It's O.K. to throw yourself into something new, even if you're not quite sure of the outcome. It's O.K. to fall down. Just get back up. It's O.K. to be scared, just keep going and trust someone will help you. And most of all, it's O.K. to have fun! Lots of fun!
Lord, may she always have such spunk and gumption. Used wisely, of course. But go, Ellie, go!