Saturday, 2 July 2011
Today we were rock climbers
So often I hear people complain about how children in this day and age can't have the freedom that children used to have, health and safety have taken over all sense of normality, people are scared to let their children climb trees and scramble up hills, ball games are frowned upon in playgrounds, and heaven forbid anyone suggest a game of conkers! But to me I love nothing more than being outside, letting the children roam and explore, climb trees and scramble up banks.
Today we went to our normal quiet retreat, where the countryside is beautiful where their are rocky slopes and mucky ponds, trees with spiky bits and thistles and brambles.
Very few people explore this neck of the countryside, although it is a public footpath we are rarely disturbed by anyone else, the path is overgrown and you have to walk single file with your arms in the air to avoid getting spiked when you venture along some of the way, but to find freedom it is worth it.
The children explore and play, today they found a bit of rope and they were rock climbers, was it safe? not completely, did we have fun? definitely!
Don't get me wrong, I am always assessing the risks and I wouldn't let them do anything too dangerous, but I allow them to play, I don't mind if their trousers get torn, or their finger nails get muddy, or their knees get grazed and scratched.
Today Jake stumbled and grazed his elbow, it bled, he got up and carried on.
I have so many fond memories of scrambling around in the countryside, many many times alone with just my sister and friends, and we hurt ourselves, we got grazes and scratches, I've still got scars to prove it, but they were great times and although I wouldn't let mine go places like this alone just yet, I do take a back seat once we're here and watch them from a distance. They play, they laugh, they learn their limits. They learn to stay together to watch out for each other and to not over step the boundaries, they learn so many things such vital lessons I doubt they'd learn without the freedom.
Today we were adventurers, we were rock climbers!