Home > Blogging, Faith > Pole Vaulting Into A Dog Pen

Pole Vaulting Into A Dog Pen

My mom was supposed to be home.  It was late fall, 1973.  I was in kindergarten and had just turned five a month before.  It was cold and rainy and I was supposed to ride the bus to babysitter.

My mom had told me that if it rained she wouldn’t go to work.  She worked at Bradley’s Farm Store.  I can still remember the smells of the feed and seed that was traded there.  I remember going there on Saturday morning with my dad, watching him haggle over pocket knives and drink six-ounce Cokes in real glass bottles.

It rained that day, so I rode the school bus home.  I was confused and bewildered that she wasn’t there.  The door to the house was also locked, which was strange for 1973, especially for where we lived.  We lived miles away from the nearest neighbor, so walking there was not an option.

Finally, I walked to our dog pen.  Inside were my two beagles, Rusty and Blackie.  I imagine you can guess what color they were by their names.  Obviously I was creative when it came to naming by pets.

That’s when I got the bright idea of getting in the pen with them to stay warm.  By this time, it was around 5 p.m., and it was getting cooler.  I just had one problem.  I couldn’t get the pen opened.  I’m not sure if I cried or not, but I know I was becoming a bit distraught.

I found a metal pole that was lying around and decided to pole vault into the pen.  I had seen pole vaulting during the 1972 Summer Olympics or on Wide World of Sports.  I knew enough that it was possible, if not probable.

I would love to say that I was able to clear the top of the pen and land within its confines, but that would be a lie.  Come to find out, a metal pole does not have the flexibility of pole used for vaulting.  I know that I crashed into the side of the pen and that was that.   Around 6 p.m., my parents found me sitting on the stoop that led from the carport into the house.  They were frightened since I wasn’t at the sitter’s like they thought I would be.

What does that have to do with anything today?  How does it help any of us, other that to clearly communicate our intentions to our small children?

When we are children we are extremely creative.  I came up with, at the age of five, a way to stay warm.  I devised a plan on how to get inside a dog pen by pole vaulting.  I was a lot smarter at age five than perhaps at any other time in my life.  Why?

I believed.  I had faith.  I knew it would all work out.  I took risks.

Maybe we need a little bit of that in our lives today.  To believe the unbelievable.  To have faith, when there is nothing to see.  To take risks in the face of failure and danger.

Maybe we need to pole vault into a dog pen.

Are you as creative as a child?  Do yo believe the unbelievable?  Do you have faith in what you cannot see?  Do you take risks?

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Categories: Blogging, Faith Tags: , , , ,
  1. October 9, 2013 at 7:07 am

    Love the analogy, Larry. Yes, we all could use a little more child-like faith.

  2. October 9, 2013 at 8:24 am

    I remember building forts out of blankets with my brother…pretending to be in a spaceship…It. Was. Awesome.
    We just don’t expand our minds that way anymore…it’s a shame…

    • October 9, 2013 at 8:26 am

      but I will say…having kids…surly has revived the Kid in me…I love playing with my son and his action figures and making forts again with them…it’s like time traveling back…love it.

      • October 10, 2013 at 5:53 am

        Kids definitely do strange things to you like that

  3. October 9, 2013 at 11:53 am

    I’m not much of a risk taker. I remember a time when I would stick my hand in a hamster cage in a heartbeat. It wasn’t a lack of fear – I always knew I could get bitten and how much it hurt. I’d been hamster bit many a time. It was just that I wanted to hold that hamster more than I feared the hamster’s bite.

    I’m not that girl anymore. I don’t know when she disappeared, when the fear of the bite overtook my excitement and desire to reach into dangerous places. But I’m trying to get her back!

  4. October 9, 2013 at 10:27 pm

    The title of this post would make a great title for a book.

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