After doing the afternoon Kindy pickup, I was sitting in the garden with my, four and a half year old, grandson. I asked him about his day, what he did at Kindy. “Nothing. I just played”, he replied.
“What else?”, I asked. He responded, I listened and then asked “What else did you do?” He thoughtfully sat for a moment and then told me of discovering something new. “Papa did you know that…”
I enjoy our almost daily conversations. I do it to connect with him and I’m grateful for the opportunity just to have the time together. I often appreciate his perspective and this helps me see things I might otherwise miss.
At the moment, I’m preparing for some Formation work with school staffs. As I prepare, I realise that my work with them isn’t all that different from my grandpa encounters with my grandson. In both cases, I’m encouraging reflection and contemplation. It doesn’t matter whether someone is young and relatively inexperienced, or older and more experienced.
Looking back on life and seeing what surfaces for attention, being gently guided to go deeper, can unearth things of consequence. It gives “the work of my life” a sense of place in the world. This is a great protection against the anxiety that is too often experienced in the chaos of constant change, uncertainty and the ever present pressure for achievement and results.