I forced myself to get outside today and I’m so glad I did. It was the ultimate sunny day. Clear skies, sun, and warmth.
I had plans with my brother to explore the Capilano Suspension Bridge in North Vancouver. He cancelled on me. Normally I would have used the excuse to sit on my couch and spend the day watching TV. Whether it was the sun, my energy, or that I want to ensure I do things with my daughter, I went to the park on my own.
I loved every minute of it. I don’t think I stopped smiling the entire time. The views were amazing and it felt so good to be in nature.
Early months of Annika’s life were spent breastfeeding on the couch watching hours of TV (the Olympics were on so I feel like that was a small excuse). I would try to get outside once a day for a small walk, but I didn’t get to take full advantage of the glories of summer.
The suspension bridge is hidden in a rainforest where you can walk across the canyon, climb in the trees, and scale the cliff. All while learning environmental facts or details of how the park was created for the public. I read each of the educational signs aloud to Annika, feeling prouder with each one of the experience I was providing for her even if she did sleep through the whole thing.
My father was someone who has always been quick to get up each day and ask what we were doing. He wanted us to go for a hike or a walk or bike ride. Most of the time I’d complain, drag my feet, or refuse to go. I envy my father of his drive and hope to instill it in my daughter (even if it means forcing myself to do it in the process).
The fresh air filled me with a sense of peace. I am so glad I got out and experienced the outdoors today. I find it crazy how we have to encourage people to get outdoors now. Most of our time is spent in front of some form of a screen. According to a recent survey, 70% of Canadian youth get an hour or less outside a day! The David Suzuki Foundation had a challenge to get 5000 families outside last fall. Their website shows that they were only able to get 2500 to commit. http://www.davidsuzuki.org/what-you-can-do/connecting-youth-with-nature/ Experiencing nature has become an item on our to do lists. I hope to keep finding ways to push myself outside and experience nature, rather than simply run to my car oblivious to the beauty around me.