He was not happy. And we were just ten minutes into the flight—which didn’t make me all that happy. Nothing like a loud, unhappy “youngun” to really make a trip interminable. But then I heard what he was saying: “I want to go up in the air!” That intrigued me. And his Mama said, “We are up in the air. Look out the window. See the clouds? Look down there.” Came the very loud, very definitive response. “No! I wanna go up in the air!”
And it made some kind of sense to me. After all, there he was, sitting in a chair for heaven’s sake, hardly feeling like he was moving at all, no sense of height, no sense of the outside. This was not conforming to expectations generated when his Mom or Dad said, “We’re going to go up in the air.”
I have little friends who often demand to “go up.” And they experience the deliciousness of being suspended overhead—horizontal to the ground—a wonderful precariousness with no floor to stand on, certainly no chair to sit in.
How often do our expectations determine what we see, and what we don’t? We look at the ordinary and miss the extraordinary. We watch the hours as they pass and miss eternity. We sit by our window at thirty-one thousand feet, open our mouths and squall, “No! I wanna go up in the air!”