In the evening we celebrated the 18th birthday of one of the young men in attendance. Part of the celebration was carrying him out into the darkness and throwing him into the creek. I encouraged my grandchildren to join in and they gladly ran with the group.
Not long after returning the 9 year old came over and asked if we could go home.
I went into selfish overdrive - absolutely not! We drove 2 hours to get here and I am not driving home in the dark! Why oh why didn't my Spiritual Director kick in instead?
The 11 year old came over in the middle of my rant and asked his brother "Why do you want to go home?"
I was stunned. My years of training and practice of listening and I hadn't asked the simple question which would have helped me understand what was going on inside my precious grandson.
He was afraid because while on the trip to the creek some of the young adults had made scary noises in the dark. So we talked about his fear and I had one of the young men come over and apologize and say that they would not scare him further. He calmed down and eventually went back to his friends to play.
Thank you 11 year old for reminding me that I am broken and that when I jump into selfish overdrive I need to stop and ask the simple questions.