Post by Doug Mannen, Way of the Circle Co-Facilitator

“Don’t judge a book by its cover.” and “Good things come in small packages.” are two cliches which came to mind following a wondrous experience. It reminded me that at this time of year when people are often overwhelmed, overjoyed or over saddened there are always surprises which balance us and help us to step back and take a deep breath and “re-boot”.This experience, not only reminded me of simple pleasures, but of how the youngest of our journeyers to the Soul within, the children, are not seeking anything; they are simply giving all that they are-pure unconditional love.

On December 16, I attended, or should I say was drawn to, a Christmas celebration at Alliance, the school where I do most of my volunteering. The JK/SK students were performing, class by class, for parents, grandparents, siblings and friends. The gym, which is large, was full. Those who had chairs were fortunate; those who did not were packed like standing sardines. I was a sardine.

Alliance has a large student population and of that there were over 200 JK/SK kids nervously waiting to wave, dance, twirl, cry —anything but pay attention to anxious teachers, yet in the end there was total success. Way to cute for sure (as if children can ever be way to cute). But amidst the chaos emerged the smallest, but most important part of this story…

She was adorable. I have to call her She because I was so mesmerized by Her and even though I had had the chance twice, I failed to ask Her name. Let’s call her Joy! Joy came waddling through the crowd at the back of the gym. I can’t justify calling her a toddler for she was indeed a new walker. Her feet were splayed outwards, her knees were bent and arms were pushed forwards, balancing her baby steps. I had forgotten what it meant to “take baby steps”! Joy would wave to anyone who saw her passing by; she was constantly waving. The look on the faces of the tall ones around her was incredible. She had almost passed me; there had been no wave. Another wonderful lesson from the wee one: “Don’t take anything for granted!” Then she turned towards me so quickly that she almost fell. Grabbing my knee to stop herself from sitting down, she looked up at me with the deepest of blue eyes and stared. I stared back. Her grandpa stood by watching patiently and knowingly. When Joy finally let go of my leg, I realized how ” full ” I was.

Joy stopped in front of a young man who I had sensed was troubled. She stood, looking up at him for at least thirty seconds, until he realized this little bundle of Joy was smiling at him. When he looked down she waved; he smiled and waved back. Then off she went. I was watching an Angel at work!

I watched Joy working the crowd for a long time after. She came by me one more time, waved and moved on; her eyes beaming love.

This wee Joy was teaching all who would see to go forward with innocence, wonderment, trust and pure unconditional acceptance.

Perhaps Joy’s last name is Love!


Home Practice
* Are you wanting to take baby steps?
* Is there an issue, a wish, a dream or manifestation you would enjoy moving forward with?

Call upon a helper to ask for guidance in understanding what baby steps you are being called to take as you move towards your goal. Perhaps record the guidance you received and date it to be read weeks from now, even months. See where those baby steps have taken you.

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