Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Forest Friday's



Friday was a pretty big day for a certain little man, and his mama. Almost five years have passed on our journey as mother and son, and for the most part we have been hand in hand throughout it. Yes, I have taken moments away for mama time here and there, Justin and I have gotten out for a little lunch date every once in awhile and there have been moments at home alone while Justin and Reece head out on a little adventure of their own. But when I look back Reece has not really been that far from my side in the last five years, until Friday.

For the last two years Reece and I have participated in an outdoor nature program called Oaks and Acorns. It is for children birth to age 5 and their caregivers. It is a wonderful program, and while we both really loved it, I felt Reece had outgrown the program. There is another program for homeschoolers, but the age range is six to twelve and I feel he is a little too young for this program.

So there we were stuck in the middle, too old for one and too young for the other. I shared my concerns with a few people and then like magic some wonderful ladies stepped up and created an outdoor nature program for four and five year olds. Yes! I was happy, excited and very grateful.

Forest Friday's is a half day program offered by Jumping Mouse Nature Education and this past Friday was Reece's first day. He had expressed concern leading up to it that I couldn't go with him. While I told him I wouldn't be far, he was pretty adamant that without me he wouldn't participate. Justin came along with us on Friday morning and we decided that if Reece needed someone to go along with him Justin would be it.

Well we got there and Reece jumped out of the car, saw his friends (all of the kids in the program were all friends from our Oaks and Acorns program), recognized his nature connection mentors and then headed off with them to pick apples. Justin stayed within sight, and Reece did look for him for the first little while, but after a bit Justin hung back a little further and a little further, until Reece was off exploring in the woods.

A few of us moms headed out into the woods on our own little hike and just as we were finishing came across the group in the meadow. We stood back for quite some time just watching, all very happy to see our little ones enjoying their time in nature. I was filled with such emotion in that moment to see my little man out there exploring and having fun with his mentors.

This was a very big day for Reece, and truth be told a big day for me too. We not only survived it, but we both enjoyed our time in the woods, coming together in a sharing circle at the end of the morning to share our adventures with each other.

My dream has always been to let Reece's journey unfold as it should, in his own way and in his own time. Not once have I been disappointed with this approach. He is traveling his path and I am along for the ride, feeling so very blessed to be enjoying every single moment.

20 comments:

  1. What a beautiful, heartfelt post Kim. Beautifully written xx

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  2. No matter what their age, it's hard to let go isn't it? I remember letting go when they were five, then ten, then through high school, college. I am now facing letting ago again as my 20 yo son applies to close and far away grad schools. It's terrifying and thrilling all rolled up into one exhausting state of mind. However, I am so happy when he is happy and that is what parenting is all about :)

    Loved reading this post.

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    1. Yes Karen, I think it is :)

      Happy when he is happy...that is a good place to be.

      xo

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  3. How wonderful that you were able to make something work for you and Reece! Looks like so much fun!

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  4. The letting go...even if it's just for a little bit of time, is never easy. I think it gets more difficult as they get older because it goes from letting go to saying farewell...even for just a few weeks or months. But we all survive and as Karen says, I'm happy when they are happy. Enjoy the journey!

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  5. so beautiful you present this process, the process of letting go in a way. as i have three children i know exactly what you are talking about and i have always tried not to push, but to let go in the pace of the children!

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    1. It is such a beautiful process when it unfolds on its own.

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  6. Oh my! Wonderful. What a big step. I hope one day S and I will be able to take that step. You are so blessed with all these wonderful nature programs!

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    1. Thanks KC. I feel so very blessed for this program, we are very lucky.

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  7. Kim....I have tears in my eyes. This sums up my ideas on parenting. When my boys were preschool age and early school age I didn't listen to my heart. They both went to preschool, one very unhappy, one a little unhappy. Our eldest went to big school for 2 1/2 years, at first happy and then becoming more unhappy as the days progressed.We then removed both our boys from formal schooling. They have both blossomed. If I could go back and do that time all over again I would. I now follow my heart always.Keep doing what you're doing Kim. It is just perfect. xxoo

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    1. The heart never leads us astray, does it? Thank you for sharing Julie and for your very kind words. This parenting gig is not easy in the least, but it is days like last Friday that make it so worth it and give me a little hint that I am on the right path raising this precious little man of mine.

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  8. So lovely, Kim! I'm happy it was a positive experience for you, too. I hope the glitter in your home isn't out of control. ;)

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    1. Thanks D'Arcy. And no, the glitter is totally fine, still on the spruce cones :) Reece has them beside his bed.

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  9. Wonderful Post!! Where is the Oaks & Acorns Program? I would love to take Sorin

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    1. Thanks Jennifer. It is a great program and you and Sorin would love it. The program we go to is in Peterborough on Friday mornings from 10am to 11:30am. There is no charge.

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  10. I love this! For someone who really wants to follow her child's lead and knows of its importance, this is wonderful and poignant!

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