Last Saturday, the Little Miracles Central Coast team, ventured out to the Tree Tops Adventure Park to spend some time together. The park is situated at Yarramalong on the Central Coast not far off the Freeway. It’s a place of excitement, tranquility, fun, big challenges and definitely a space whereby you are being taken out of your comfort zone.
In terms of team building, it certainly hit the mark. It certainly was a wonderful team building exercise. Those who seemed the more fearless (not afraid of heights or the ones who had higher fitness levels) cheered the others on. Some of us found the challenges quite confronting and although the cheer squad was there, they too needed a verbal push along as they conquered their physical giants.
As a more ‘seasoned’ woman I find myself lost in the excitement and the challenge of days like this. Although my mantra maybe on of ‘what am I doing, get me out of here, I will never do this again’ I enevitably find myself year-after-year climbing one more wall, running a course or whatever the case may be. I think I love these days and challenges because I recognise the importance of being ‘out of my comfort zone’. I embrace this because after a few years on this planet and being determined to make a difference for the generations to come I realise that, in order to live the life I dream of, I need to grow as a person. These days are perfect boundary pushers.
Throughout the day and as we embraced new and ever increasing challenges I found myself lost in the spirit of the Little Miracles team. I realised that the spirit and culture of Honor, that we are committed to and instill into the children, has become a reality within the staff. Yes, we cheered each other on and encouraged new heights but it wasn’t only our team we focused on – we encouraged the team ahead and cheered relentlessly as they accomplished new heights. My heart was warmed as I watched our team building each other and others who came along our path simply through Honor. What a privilege it was to get a glimpse of how something as simple as speaking about and exampling honor can impact lives.
Along the course, there was one family just ahead of one of our teams that consisted of a mum, dad and a young girl about nine years old. This family was amazing, the way they worked as a team, was inspiring. The little girl was a strong character, she was very scared at times even to the point where a few tears were shed. Mum and Dad were fantastic, they didn’t bully her or push her into going ahead, however, they encouraged her to not give up, but rather through support and patience they encouraged her to keep going. They guided her through each obstacle with mum in front and dad behind her. This family stood out to me and I really admired them, they didn’t over protect their young daughter, nor did they push her too far, rather they talked her through every step in a gentle manner whilst speaking confidence into her so she could succeed.
They knew there was no way she could hurt herself, the safety equipment was in place, they weren’t making her do something she didn’t want to do, they just took her through the whole process and set her up for victory. She was amazing and an inspiration too, she was scared at times but still didn’t want to give up, she badly wanted to complete the course. The ingredients for her success were simple: a very supportive mum and dad who were willing to let this little girl work through the uncomfortableness, patience, kindness and gentleness.
As parents, finding that fine line which allows us to teach, not push too hard yet to know when our children need to be encouraged to step out of their comfort zones is challenging, indeed. In order to understand that, I believe we (as parents) need that experience of pushing through our fears because, let’s be honest, we all have something we are scared of. So, allowing them to see us take steps like this is invaluable in their walks. Remember, the article I wrote called ‘Monkey-See-Monkey-Do’. We all have them, however, if as parents we protect them to the point where they don’t have the opportunity to develop perseverance, persistence and that feeling of ” I conquered the ‘a mountain” so to speak, and we all need to face the mountain and begin to walk towards it, with confidence and if there is no cheer squad by your side then allow yourself to cheer you on all the way. Or, better yet, find someone in your life who will cheer you on as you endeavour to bring change to your world and those around you.
It may be speaking publicly for the first time, a new sport like paddle boarding, cooking a new dish for visitors etc.
Your mountain doesn’t have to be climbing trees or jumping through obstacle courses, it may very well be public speaking, paddle boarding, the ocean, skateboarding, spiders or having people over for dinner. The list goes on. For me, I have decided that I want to take our whole family (all twenty of us) to TreeTops and have a go. I realise it will be challenging, that there could be tears, sweat and anxiety and I know that I personally won’t like the journey but I will love the destination just like I did on Saturday.
May we all be parents who always cheer our children and grandchildren to be free to not only face their fears but to conquer them through our belief in them and allowing them to see us as we bravely and fearlessly face and conquer our own fears.
I want to congratulate all the girls on the Little Miracles team for being such amazing participants and the most wonderful Child Care Educators ever.
Oh and a little P.S. Don’t worry about all those sore muscles they too will pass.