Stay Gold: Recovering the Wonder and Courage of Your Inner Child
I can recall everything that I loved as a young girl and all the things that fired me up from the pit of my belly. My soul gravitated to all things ethereal, magical and mysterious; I looked up to the celestial imprints of stars and planets in the skies, and my eyes glazed over with a deep and profound affection.
I loved words, music and people. I held a great passion for films and stories of underdogs that won against all odds, and for superheroes and loners who fought for justice and the greater good. To me, it was not make-believe — it was my reality, and what naturally resonated with me. Those chords of enthusiasm and passion were like the clearest echo of a bell through my mind, sparking an explosion of curiosity that burned brightly from my heart.
The things that ignited us as children remain as pictures in our mind, and as vibrations in our hearts. I am all these things I loved. I am still this young girl. No matter what was going on in my external world, I had created my own inner world that I could withdraw to, and I still do. The inner weave of our talents and passions as children remains etched into our hearts. We can transport ourselves back there at any time — we need only remember that golden essence of purity, adventure, curiosity, and the undistilled magic that survives within us all.
Stay Gold: Recovering the Wonder and Courage of Your Inner Child
Nature’s first green is gold,
her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf’s a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down today.
Nothing gold can stay.
– Robert Frost, Nothing Gold Can Stay
Our inner child is our connection to our untapped potential, imagination, and innate charm. The elemental nature of who we are thrives on love, wonder, and an instinctive devotion to all things and experiences that warm our heart and ignite our interest.
Yet somewhere along the way, our inner child loses its voice. It becomes hushed by harsh challenges, life’s setbacks, and the inevitable seriousness that being an adult brings. We lose the beauty of that golden intention as children to live for now, find charisma and appeal in the simplest of things, and rise up relentlessly after each stumble or fall, with even greater confidence than before.
The wild and wonderful colors of our inner child are the hardest to hold onto. They are our hues of gold. We deny and disguise our soft edges, open-mindedness, and bursting hearts in favor of a defensive armor that we use as protection from the world around us. Yet when we reflect with greater clarity and wisdom back to the beauty of our inner child, we find that they are in fact our greatest ally and the essential truth of who we are — and who we will always be when we choose to stay gold.
Our challenge to stay gold
A grownup is a child with layers on.
– Woody Harrelson
We create and construct layers to stay safe and unharmed from what very often feels like a very cruel existence. We are dosed with pain, failure, sorrow, and great mountains to climb, so it is only natural that we will endeavor to protect ourselves any way we can. We use filters in our minds and place blankets upon our hearts, and we darken the color of our souls with every heartbreak and hurt we endure. We lock ourselves in, yet our inner child holds the key to our liberation from life’s frustrations.
Tough times call upon our reserves of inner strength for us to dig a way through. However, when we actually begin to deconstruct the mental walls we’ve built up, we intelligently devise a route back to a much greater source of strength and courage: that of our inner child. Our inner child is imbued with the beauty of vulnerability, the fierceness of love, and the bravery to be bold and take chances. Layers don’t keep the pain, sorrow and hard times away; they only keep them chained in.
The essence of our inner child
He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.
– Albert Einstein (more quotes)
Creativity is born from our brain’s intuitive processes — something that our inner child is the master of. Who we are at heart is the best person to design our authentic path and paint our future with eyes wide open to life’s infinite possibilities. Our potential knows no bounds — it is us who cage our inner talents and passions deep inside us. We inadvertently crush the flowers of our enthusiasm when we overwhelm our natural gifts with artificial logic and limits.
Our inner child lives and breathes from the heart, defying logic every step of the way. When we tap back into our heart-space of creativity, possibility, and the inherent newness that we are blessed with the capacity to create, then the seeds of our potential can begin to be sown. We begin to view life through a lens of wonder rather than woe — magical, through every mistake, mishap, and misjudgement. When we calm our minds, we can feel our hearts.
Fearless and free
Children have neither past nor future; they enjoy the present, which very few of us do.
– Jean de la Bruyere
There is an invincibility that sits within us all. It’s a fiery impulse of fearlessness, courage, persistence, and inner grit. This is the golden touch of our inner child; climbing mountains for the sheer adventure of the peek, and getting back up defiantly after every fall without a second thought. There is a great freedom in knowing that no matter what takes you down, you will always get back up; and to do so while remaining propelled and enchanted rather than hardened and resentful of life’s many hits.
We should not fear our falls, because we get stronger and more confident after each one. We should not be afraid at the height and magnitude of what we dream to pursue, because our journey is what makes reaching the top extra special. And we should not fear the darkness of despair, for we are the masters who decide where to shine our light.
Remember who you are
You are as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fears; as young as your hope, as old as your despair.
– Samuel Ullman
The child within is our wise guide, faithful friend and eternal hope. They rest within our heart, and we find them by heeding the call of what we love. It is a place to which we can always return, to remind ourselves of our innate ability to defy fearful living and keep reaching for the best vistas in life — a place where we can choose to stay gold.