Kid’s collect a lot of junk. Some of it is good junk like Lego’s and pretty dolls and some of it is utter rubbish. Take for instance the penny. I would walk by a penny without a second thought. Not a kid. Especially a little kid. While walking in a busy parking lot, they will see the penny on the ground, stop mid stride with their mother barely keeping from tumbling head first over their little body, bend down and scoop that little treasure up. They will turn it over in their hands, eyes wide and bright and say, “Look! I found a penny!” as if it were the greatest treasure known to mankind. Oh to be so easily pleased with one self! To be so easily excited by the small gifts from the universe!
In a quest to remember those little moments, I keep a stash of the treasures that my children have discovered (I may be a bit of a junk hoarder myself). Many of these things were discovered, marveled at, and then handed over to mom to “carry for me.” Or maybe they were shoved into one of my pockets by little hands that were scurrying for even more treasure to hoard. Of course, those treasures were soon forgotten until the end of the day when the clothes came off and the rocks and bits fell haphazardly to the floor. Or they banged around in the dryer days later. Then I remembered them, but the kids still forgot. That’s the way it is with kids. The greatest treasure one minute, forgotten the next.
I imagine even as adults we act like this. The new car, the new job, the new relationship. All shiny little bits of treasure that were once so magical and desired, but once acquired quickly become old, devoid of luster, and forgotten. If only we could maintain the feeling of finding a shiny penny. Maybe it’s just me. That thing I worked so hard for, dreamed about, spent my life acquiring, I’m there. I made it. I’m at the top of my game. Now that I’m here, it’s not what I expected. It lacks a certain luster. It seems devoid of the magic. It’s mundane and the true reason I did it -seems forgotten. Why did I do all of this again?
I’m ready for a new adventure. I’m ready for a new treasure. I’m looking for a shiny penny that stops me in my tracks and makes me marvel at the strange gift from the universe.
Or I might just stick my hand in my pocket and discover that I already have that shiny penny. I put it in my pocket a long time ago and forgot about it. It’s been there the whole time just waiting to be rediscovered.