Written by Karen D. Swim
I watched the little girls draw the crooked squares in colored chalk on the sidewalk. I smiled remembering my own childhood games of hopscotch. Hop, hop, hop. The first round was always easy because you knew what to expect. Hop, hop, hop, land, hop, land hop. You knew just how long you needed to balance on one leg before landing on two feet again.
Life sometimes feels like a game of hopscotch. Sometimes you maneuver a tiny square on one leg and in other places both feet are firmly planted on the ground. Along the way you pick up your marker as you progress from square to square. Unlike hopscotch, the squares are not neatly drawn in brightly colored chalk. You may find yourself balancing longer than is reasonably comfortable on one leg praying to reach the spot when you can put down both feet and steady yourself. Hop, hop, hop, hop, hop, land, hop.
In hopscotch and life the game grows in complexity as you add more people. No longer jumping from square to square, you also have to jump over the obstacles that others have placed in your path. Hop, jump, jump, hop, hop, land, jump, hop.
As I sat musing, the little girls giggled, ponytails bobbing up and down as they each took turns, hopping, landing, and picking up their marker. Hop, land, hop, bend, jump, turn to do it again. I watched as the smaller little girl took her turn, eyes on the pattern, with determination in her eyes – hop, hop, hop, jump, hop, bend, stumble. Rather than become discouraged they collapsed into giggles, declared a winner and started a new game, hop, hop, hop, land, hop, land, hop.
I rose from the chair with a smile determined to go and start my own new game, no colored chalk required.
How’s your game these days? Are you jumping on one foot or two? Do you start a new game when you stumble or just go to the end of the line?