Tonje Lilleås

Raise them wild – Corona Chronicles day 6

When my wife and I first talked about having kids together some years ago we were positive that if we should be so lucky, we would raise them wild. Not in the sense that boys will be boys would be our rule to live by. But in the sense that we wanted our children to love being outside and grow up with an outdoorsy lifestyle. The current situation with corona virus hasn’t made this any less important for us.

Positive sides of a horrific situation

One of the real advantages from being in lockdown is the fact that we actually have time for a real break outside in the middle of the day every day. That’s something we miss in our normal day to day routine. And so we try to focus on how amazing it is to actually be able to go adventuring together every day.

Today we brought lunch and a book that plays bird sounds to a campsite in the forest. We had lunch listening to the birds chirp. And we tried to figure out which birds were present in the trees above by searching through the book. Our oldest found a trail behind the campsite that he wanted to follow. We agreed that he would lead the exploring today, and he took un the task with a lot of pride.

As we walked through the forest it hit me; this is the kind of life we were wanting to lead. When we talked about having children together, this was the life we envisioned. And we’re getting to live it now, because we have a bit more control of our time. Not that this Corona virus situation isn’t horrible, but I still find the fact pretty amazing.

Raise them wild – not just to get good images

I admit that I think raising outdoorsy kids provides more Kodak moments than raising kids to sit in front of a screen most of the day. However that isn’t the reason I think it’s so important to raise them wild. I firmly believe that giving them the love for and trust in nature is one of the biggest gifts we can give them. If we are able to give them the same sense of joy, peace and awe that we experience whenever we’re outside, I’m sure they’ll always find their way back to that if life gets hard.

For me I think that’s what I’m doing right now. And what I have done for some years already. I’m repeatedly finding my way back to where I belong, to where I’m safe and grounded.

More than anything I think that raising them wild will spark their passions and interests. I don’t know any situation that offers more curious questions from my oldest than when we’re adventuring outside.

And right now I know my oldest son is a bit afraid and confused. I know because he told me, and because I see it in his behavior. However when he was out in the forest today that fear and confusion was completely gone. He was a champion as he lead us on new trails, balanced over tree trunks and figured out which birds were singing when. I saw and felt how he felt safe, confident, curious and joyful. They both did. Now more than ever I’m confident that it’s important and right for us to raise them wild. I’m grateful for the opportunity and I know we are blessed.

How are you all coping with this new situation in the world? And how are your children dealing with it? I would love to hear from you in the comments down below. Stay safe and take care. I wish you all the very best days possible!



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