I WANT TO BE THE OLDER LITTLE BOY

I like to think I was reschooled in the ancient history of biological evolution of man; in the way the body and mind instinctively reacts to knowledge and experience.
Few days ago, I was in our basement, on the queue to take a Serology test with other students and school officials inside our lockdown bubble. These officials were university workers and those who work in proximity with the university, one way or the other. Some of them are parents, recently weds with toddlers.
A family came with their boy, who is just about three to four years old. Ol’boy! Was this boy active and restless?! He literally ran from one end of the building to the other, jumping as he ran. This lad would run to his father, make some faces in response to whatever face he makes at him, and would run back. He was everywhere.

Soon enough, another family came with their just over a year old boy. He was silent and clung to his mum. Like most kids, he probably thought his mum was gonna disappear if not tied down to him and his needs. But, in his fear, his eyes never stopped following the other boy around.
He would follow him with his eyes as he ran about. Whatever was going on in his mind, I had no idea. But I could guessed. His eyes lit every time the boy runs past him. He would make attempts to touch him when the boy runs to him to play with his cheeks. Whenever the boy reached out with his hands, he would try to take it with his free hand – the other hand holding his mum’s fingers. I could guess he wanted so much to join in whatever the boy was doing. He wanted to have that same fun. Yet, he wanted the safety and protection of his mum. I wondered how long he was gonna last.
He didn’t last too long. Within minutes, he was already making attempts to follow in the boy’s footsteps. First, he had to let go of him mum’s fingers. And interestingly, he had to get his mum’s approval. I saw him look up to his mum and back to the boy. The mum got the message. He was literally asking without saying a word, “Is it okay if I joined in the fun, mum?” His mum smiled, and gave a nod. She even helped him forward. The reins were loose!
With his feeble, wiggly steps, he ran after the boy. And I could see, the older boy was glad he had, first an audience, and then someone he could play with. I mean, I could see he was happy that there’s someone he’s been able to influence to join in his fun. And I bet it meant more to him that the person was younger. I smiled.
I could see. He held his hands and urged him on. His laughter was loud. It was contagious. Now that they are two, other people noticed, and watched the two toddlers play and prance about. All the time, the eyes of both their parents never left them. They were like hawks, ready to jump into action if any of them falls or ever need their attention.
Now that I think of it, I’m more happy than I was. Despite the fact that I had earpieces in my ears listening to Olamide’s ‘Letter to Milli”, I followed them all through with my eyes, filtering their giggles through my earpieces. I was smiling although. I enjoyed the show.
They showed me a lesson. No, many lessons.
• Looking at other people do something and having fun can inspire you to do same.
• Leaving your comfort zone is a must for you to develop, not just grow.
• The people who care about you will always look after you, even when it means leaving them.
• Always aim to practice what you learn.
• Having fun by yourself is cool, yeah. But yeah, having an audience is even more beautiful.
• Always seek to influence, teach and pass down your knowledge to someone or some people.
• People will not always notice you, until you begin to have an influence. There is no reward for selfishness.
• Among others, or at best, you could just smile about it and you know, enjoy the story
But honestly, I wouldn’t mind being that older little boy.
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