David was now two years old and as “rough and tumble” as a boy could be – 100% action all the time – and always ready to play or wrestle.
What has never ceased to amaze me is just how quick a child’s growth and learning curve actually are; and at two years old David was starting to easily become our equal in so many ways, and was sharp as a tack.
One activity that David and I never missed out on was our daily wrestling sessions on the family room carpet, and here he rides me as if I was an elephant – which he loved to do.
I think that more than any other specific activity, David enjoyed his “elephant rides” the most of all – because he was now in charge and in control of his world – which is important for kids to experience from time to time.
No matter what the wrestling hold was or what impossible position I put him in, David never gave up or called “Uncle” – never.
It was an early test of wills between David and I, as he decided early on to never lose a wrestling competition – because he could simply “outlast” me without giving in.
So as time went on and I had other things that I had to get to, even a little tickling wouldn’t get David to throw in the towel…he simply asked for more.
My personal philosophy is that children begin “growing antlers” early on in life and are constantly probing their boundaries; and David’s first “victory” in life was to know that he could always outlast me in a wrestling competition and would never, ever give in – and it worked.
David was beginning the transformation from a toddler to a very big boy, and was confident and secure in his world and his place in it.
David now began to roam further afield and his tricycle got lots of use, but our favorite activity was our daily late afternoon and early evening walks as a family.
It seems like children transorm themselves on an almost daily basis as they grow and learn more and more every day – making adults look like we’re stagnating in comparison – if we don’t continue to challenge ourselves as well.
Adults often seem to “plateau” at a relatively early age – in their mid twenties – and decide that they are done with learning and have all the understanding that they need for living…and sadly begin the long process of mental and physical atrophy from that point on.
Here David decides to go for a stroll in my loafers, and proudly demonstrates that he too can carry the load for a while as the “man of the family.”
Children constantly push their boundaries on a daily basis, always discovering and learning – and building skills that will carry them to the next level in life.
Our daily walks as a family in the late afternoons and early evenings was really a special time for us, and David easily walked a couple of miles as just a young child.
We walked through nearby fields and new subdivisions that were under development, and there was always a point where David wanted to ride on my shoulders – which gave him a totally different perspective as we made our way.
Although my wife chooses not to appear in these pictures, she was always behind the camera and the foundation of our family as a proud “homemaker” that devoted 100% of her time to “her guys” and our family.
Although Mather AFB and Sacramento, CA, were working out well for us; as a family we couldn’t help missing the life that we had in Germany – and I began investigating opportunities to return overseas on my next Air Force assignment.