Wading through the wave pool at a water park with my six-year-old daughter yesterday, I witnessed the most enlightening sight. Briella bobbed in and out of the chest-high waves, while another little girl swam up next to her. Briella popped out from a wave and their eyes met. They looked at each other for a second, smiled, and then both ducked under a wave like a couple of mermaids.
“I can swim under water,” the cute brown-haired, freckle-face girl said, as the sunlight hit her blue eyes making them sparkle like precious gems.
“Let’s see,” Briella said. The little girl held her nose and swam a few feet. She emerged, as a smile of accomplishment grew across her face. Briella clapped for her. “Watch this, “said Briella then she slipped under a wave and swam around in a circle.
“That’s great!” said the little girl. “I’m Erin.” Briella smiled and smoothed her long golden hair back with her hands.
“I’m Briella,” she said and waved. The two played for the next hour like little dolphins in a pod circling, swimming, and dancing around each other fully present and having fun. As I watched and cheered for all the their tricks and accomplishments, I witnessed a pattern. There was a bit of showing off, display of ego, and then the ego was subdued, so they could just let go and enjoy the company of each other.
I think as adults, sometimes we get stuck in the ego part because of insecurities and other projections. When we get wrapped up in the ego and showing off, trying to validate and prove our worth, our true essence can’t be shared with others. We can’t ever be fully present because we’re too busy trying to impress and hide our true selves from others. We don’t want to reveal our vulnerabilities but in fact those same vulnerabilities are what makes us human and deeply connected to others. When we can love and accept ourselves, then we can be present with others without all those fears in the way. Take a lesson from a five or six-year-old! Observe self-love, letting go of the ego, and how to be fully present and love life!