Léna is also a Regional Manager for Writopia Lab whose mission is to foster joy, literacy, and critical thinking in kids and teens from all backgrounds through creative writing.

"Well, the question is, what do you want to believe? Do you want to live in a world where things are possible, or in one where they aren't?" Cin, Edges.

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Flying Squirrel, and Other Birthday Lessons

I'm not going to do it. I am on a field trip with the fifth grade, and the experience is for them after all. Oh look, there's my son, Cooper, (pictured here) bravely being the first kid to try his hand at the Flying Squirrel. He is in a tight harness, attached to a rope, while his entire fifth grade class holds onto the other end of the rope. The instructions? He runs forward, while his class runs backward.

He is up in the air, flying whooping.

"You should try it mom," he says under his breath once he's regained his cool.

I don't know, I think to myself. I weigh twice as much as these kids.

I cheer on the kids who are scared, and watch their faces flush with triumph when they're on land. Obviously, there is some trust involved, and some willingness to relinquish control. Need that, much?

I had done the trapeze "experience" before, and I felt like I didn't need to do it again. It had been scratched off my bucket list.

But it is my birthday, and I am a writer after all - every experience has it's usefulness in the creative process. I'll regret not doing it. Even if I throw up.

And then the elementary school's principal, Mr. Gold, is flying through the air like Peter Pan and I finally get the gumption to shimmy myself into a harness and put my money where my freakin' mouth is: to be honest, open and willing.

I am the last but not least in the air after a running jump, and trusting these amazing almost-middle-schoolers with my life, and I feel like Spiderman, not at all embarrassed when I land on my tuchus and NOT on my feet like everybody else. (Well, maybe just a little!)

"You looked funny," a fifth grade girl says to me, engaging me with her smile. I have no doubt about that! AND Cooper wants me to sit with him on the log at lunchtime.

This is the BEST!

I am 43 years old today, and life is too serious to be taken seriously.

PS Don't forget to enter my contest to win one of two audio books of Edges or a signed hard copy by yours truly  - sign up by Monday, June 27th at 6PM!


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