Chronicles of Little Bear: Gratitude

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It’s been a few weeks since this beautiful moment, but it was a beautiful moment none the less. I host weekly journey groups on Mondays in Fairfax, and I bring Little Bear because he enjoys the time with me, as well as sharing what he found with his helping spirits (He’s a bold child, I don’t know where he gets that from…). Well, this particular Monday was the same where I picked him up from his after school care in order to go to Journey Group.

Casually I ask, “So Little Bear, what are you going to journey about today?”

Little did I know how much of a jaw drop of a response I was going to get, he sits and thinks about it for a moment. I can figuratively hear the cogs turning in his head. He starts off his response slow, but then he picks up speed as he comes to his decision. “Well I know that I made you upset that one time when I asked for a toy and you told me no because I wasn’t grateful for what I had. So I want to journey to my helping spirits to show me gratitude and what that feels like. Because I don’t like seeing you upset and I want to know what it’s like so I can appreciate what I have. Is that a good journey, Momma bear?”

Stuttering, my brain tries to pick itself up off of the floor after the explosion my heart had across the steering wheel, “Y-y-yes, sweetie! I think that’s an AMAZING journey question!”

Sometimes he astounds me with how profound his wisdom is. I love how children naturally have this gift, and I’m trying hard to make sure that society doesn’t squish this out of him. It’s funny because the thing that I’ve learned about journeying is that it’s not the journey itself that’s the important part. The depth of the answer you receive depends on the question. Sometimes adults spend a good majority of time trying to decide a proper journey question to give them the best possible answer – and this 7 year old child thought about it in less then 1 minute.

His response was just as profound. I have him keep a journey sketchbook so then that way when he gets out of his journey he can immediately draw or write it down. It’s proven so helpful because when we first started this exploration, he often forgot his journey if he wasn’t the first one to share.

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Caption: My journey was good because I was listening to my spirits. Then I asked my journey question. They said it feels like goodness and goodness feels like thankful.

After journeying, we generally have about 15 minutes dedicated to sharing (depending on how many people come to journey group) in case people want to share. Little Bear is almost always one of the first to share. We talked a little bit more about what gratitude is, and I asked him what it felt like when he asked his helping spirits to show him what it feels like. He told me “it’s like when you’re waiting a really long time for something. You know that happy feeling in your tummy when you can’t wait? It’s like that! That’s what thankful feels like. Except I wasn’t waiting for anything. I was just feeling that.”

I didn’t know that my heart had the ability to expand as much as it did. He’s an amazing blessing to this world, and I can’t wait to see what he does in it.

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