I ran away and joined the circus!
At the point where so much of my day was routine errands and a long list of tasks needed to be completed, my creative work had become a chore instead of a joy and I seriously needed to shake things up a bit.
Every summer when school gets out, the kids can go to camp for fun-in-the-sun and hours of playtime. This year I decide that when school finished, I was going to camp. So I packed my bags and said “See ya’ later kids, Mom is running away to join the circus!”
I don’t know who was more surprised, my children or my husband!
Actually I had been trying to convince the kids for weeks to go to circus camp because it looked like so much fun. Finally they said that I should go since I was the one so excited about it – so I did!
When I arrived at circus camp eager for a change from my daily routine, it was a delight to discover exciting new chances to learn circus tricks, multitudes of costume changes and a week of continuous fun, games and laughter.
Of course I played merrily, but I also knew how important it was to take my experience home and apply it to everyday life.
Here is what I learned:
Having always seen stilt walkers in parades, I felt that this was something completely out of my reach (quite literally) and would never be able to accomplish such a marvelous skill. It looked dangerous and terrifying. But I was determined to give it a try. I got up on the stilts clutching the instructor’s hand and thought, “There is no way I’m ever going to do this by myself.”
But soon enough, after a few tips and a half hour of practice, I was on my own – stilt walking and marching with astonishing ease. I can not believe the thing that seemed impossible to me for years was so easy after all.
Maybe there is something seemingly difficult, even impossible – say YES to it, give it a try and it very well may be much easier than you thought.
Another YES – The flying trapeze! Sure it was going to be scary, but no matter what else I did this week, the flying trapeze was absolutely required on my adventure list. It was exhilarating performing tricks upside down flying through the air!
There is power and thrill when you go way beyond your comfort zone.
Part of trying new things is taking the chance of looking goofy or stupid. Not having it all together and polished. A great way to practice this state of glorious imperfection is to get dirty. After all, being dirty is the opposite of being polished. It’s hard to take yourself too seriously when you are dirty and you certainly can’t stay clean if you are going to play hard and have new adventures.
Since the entire circus camp was outdoors, there was plenty of opportunity to get dirty, messy and scruffy. Add clown make-up, arts and crafts, river games and sleeping in a meadow – I was ready for a serious scrub down when I was done!
Duh! (It’s circus camp after all!)
Everything feels better, looks better, tastes better when you laugh! I met new friends and we laughed, chuckled, giggled, hooted, chortled, cackled, guffawed hysterically and endlessly. Often over nothing at all except the sheer pleasure of being alive.
Laugh aloud right now – even if it is goofy – you will amuse yourself just doing it.
So if you want to shake things up and get out of the ordinary, grab some vim and verve, say YES, get dirty, laugh a lot and you’ve got circus!