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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Fun outside the proverbial box

Hello all!!

We had a fantastic day at the zoo today with some friends unofficially celebrating my son's 1st birthday!

I took a step outside of my comfort zone a bit and we went to pet the sting rays. I've pet rays on a couple occasions before now, however, I never had to be brave and not squirm for my squirmy child's sake. Well, I can't say I entirely succeeded in putting on a brave face. The kids wanted to feed the sting rays and so we bought the food for them to feed them (mind you my little girl has gotten her hand wet, but failed to touch a ray to this point). The other mother with me refused to feed them. She said she just wasn't daring enough, though she did eventually pet them and I was proud of her (though I didn't tell her that and she'll probably find out as she reads this-love ya, Mo!). I got the privilege of helping her son pet a ray (he's almost five). That was pretty cool.

Back to the story. Can I tell you I had absolutely no desire to hold a tiny fish head in my hand so a sting ray could come and lip it out of my hand? Zero, zilch, nada, none. First off, I didn't want to hold a fish head. Can we just all say ewwwwwww? Ok, so I got past it, sucked it up, and just didn't think too much about it. I think Bear Grylls would have been proud. Then I dipped my hand in the water as instructed and waited. It didn't take long for a ray to make haste in my direction. Now, petting a sting ray is one thing, they are like the puppy dogs of the sea (they are social and just love to be pet); having a sting ray eat out of your hand is an entirely different thing. I squealed and stomped my feet and giggled and pulled my hand out of there so fast!!! The kids thought it was the greatest thing ever. We laughed so hard. My daughter said she wanted to do it and then just threw the food in there. The little boy said he wanted to and we even got him holding it correctly before he exclaimed, "You do it again, Miss Becca!" I did two or three more times. I squealed and jumped every time. :) They loved it. We had a fantastic day and we have great memories.

Here's what I've been re-discovering. I'm a lot of fun. I LOVE being goofy. I recently went through a period where I was battling depression (probably postpartum depression, though I never went to see anybody--if you think you are suffering from PPD please see someone asap. I should have. Don't make my same mistake. If you need to chat I'm hear for you!) and I lost part of myself during that time. One of my best friend's came to visit me and reminded me of the goofy, spunky part of me that has been lying dormant. I thought I should put on a brave face for the kids and show them there was nothing to be scared of. If I did that then maybe we'd accomplish the goal of getting them to pet the rays. That was a self-imposed goal that didn't actually need to be accomplished to have a good time. I know I need to stop doing that to myself and let things unfold without having a goal or plan of how this should happen so it will be fun. No more fun that fits into my neat little proverbial box of "how it should be done." We had so much more fun laughing at my little freak outs and made great memories more so than if I'd just put on a brave face and gotten through it so they would pet the rays to have fun. No, neither of them fed the rays, but I don't think either of them will forget the experience for a while. I know I won't! Too bad my little guy conked out early. There's always next visit! :)

Wishing you goofy spunkiness in your day and blessings,

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