I Can Fly By Myself

“The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it.”

J. M. Barrie, Peter Pan

My son and I were running around the house playing some sort of fight-the-bad-guys game when I decided I wanted to take a break and sit down on the sofa. I tried to be slick about it so I said, “Derek, the rocket ship is taking off in 10-9-8-7.” The first time it worked and he made it on the ship before we took off.

So we ran around some more and after a while I was ready for another break. I figured my little ruse worked the first time, it should definitely work again. I started to count down again, “10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3”. It wasn’t working. “Derek, the rocket ship is getting ready to take off.” To which he replied, “I can fly by myself.”


First of all this now means that Daddy needs to come up with new tricks.

Secondly, my son just reminded me of something that I often forget.

Children come to us with wings and the ability to fly. We are the ones that either clip their wings or tell them that flight is not possible.

Shame on us!

Our children and students have much to teach us and yet I think far too often we are so preoccupied with teaching them that we miss out on what they have to teach us.

And it is a lot!

Think about it. When we want to learn and grow where do we look?

Each other?

A textbook?

An article?

A course?

Why are we not spending more time learning from our children? They are the ones that still believe they can fly? How many us still believe we have the power of flight? Oftentimes in my dreams I am able to fly wherever it is I want to go. It is magical. And yet I know that once I open my eyes each morning that this is no longer possible.

Why not?

My son believes he can fly. It’s time I start figuring out how he is able to do this. It’s time I put down my laptop and become my son’s sidekick. Tomorrow I have the incredible good fortune of going to Disney World for a week. I am not taking my laptop and I will not be writing any posts. Instead I will be learning how to fly.

Wish me luck.

And when I come back I will tell you all about Flight School.







  1. Lovely post, Jon!

    I agree that our children have a lot to teach us about learning, and that getting out of their way and watching them learn how to fly is so important. Let’s build superheroes (as I wrote here in this post inspired by The Script’s ‘Superheroes’ which I notice you also shared – great track! – http://wp.me/p4TJTj-6r ).

    Enjoy the flight. You never know where it’ll lead, or when you’ll need your passport, your turbo boosters, or your rocket ship. 🙂


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