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The Sky Lesson
Teachings of a Three Year Old.

by Hal Evan Caplan
March 24, 2007

The Sky Lesson_Hal Evan Caplan-Teachings of a Three Year Old.I am always amazed at the unexpected things that I learn from my 3 year old son. He is constantly teaching me lessons. Sometimes the lessons are subtle, but for the most part, "my teacher" brings to my attention the lesson before I realize what's really going on. Each time it happens, I say to myself that I will not let it get to that point again. But then, I am the student and he "is" the teacher.

Recently, I was busy with errands; running all over the place trying to get them completed. I was in and out of stores and driving from here to there. All the while, I was dragging my little teacher with me, like a rag doll. My mind was so set on the things that "needed" to get done, that I inadvertently paid little attention to my Teacher. At some point, I believe I heard him ask me if I had seen the sky. Because my thought process was elsewhere, I barely recall answering his question. I think I may have just blurted out, "Yeah-yeah".

After a few errands were completed, I realized I had forgotten something from the house. Luckily, we were close by, so I could drive back to get it. On the way back to the house, my 3 year old teacher continued to ask if I had looked at the sky. I quickly glanced out the window and again replied, "Yeah-yeah". I think he knew that I hadn't "really" looked because he continued to be persistent that I do so.

"Dad, look out there". He said.
"Look...Look, Dad, LOOK".

He then began to make a huge commotion and wanted to get out of the truck once we arrived at home. My Teacher getting out of the truck was not part of my plan!

My plan was to race inside, grab the forgotten item and race out again. Well, my 3 year teacher had another idea. And, as usual, I was unaware of what was about to happen. He had a lesson plan in mind and he was ready to teach me that lesson. Although I was in a hurry, I reluctantly let him out hoping that he would get back into the truck quickly. As soon as he was out of the truck, he ran around to where I was and darted in front of me. He now stood between me and the house. I was trying to get past him, but he positioned himself in a brace-like stance to hold me back, so I couldn't walk forward. That's when the lesson began...

"DAD!" He shouted.
"What"? I questioned.
"STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING!" He shouted even louder.
"What am I doing?" I asked.
"You are not listening to me." He exclaimed "You need to listen to me."
"We have a lot to do and I need to get th-" ...getting interrupted.
"NOOOO!!!" He demanded.
"Just wait, just wait one minute." He expressed.

With a deep breath in and a huge sigh out, I finally asked what it was that he needed to show me. Without looking up and all the while looking directly at me with a scowl on his face, "The Look" as I call it, he pointed up with his finger to the sky.

"Look up." He calmly said in a whispered tone. So, I did...I was shocked at what I saw.

The color of the sky had so many different shades of blue and what appeared to be a purple color and the clouds were so white and fluffy that my mouth dropped. It was one of the most beautiful sights that I think I have ever seen. It was gorgeous.

I couldn't take my eyes off of the sky and with my jaw still in the open position; my teacher took my hand and walked me over to the grass. He suggested that we lie down and watch the sky for a little bit. In that moment, I had forgotten all about the errands and we got down on the ground, on our backs. Actually, I laid down on my back and he climbed on top of me and laid down on his back, on top of me.

We laid there silently, looking up at the sky, for what seemed to be hours. Then, he said,
"Isn't that just amazing, dad?"
"Amazing...son, AMAZING!"

I thought to myself that there is no way this kid is only 3 years old. No way...

In a nutshell, the lesson that I learned that day is: Slow down and remember the little things in life because the little things are more important than we realize.

About the Author:
Originally from Colorado; now residing in Alabama. Hal is married and has a son. Hal loves the outdoors and is always willing to learn...and of course, always learns from his son.

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