All of my unrealistic expectations were created by that explorer.
That kid has freedom at seven that I can't get at seventeen.
Any problems, all challenges she faces,
are solved quickly and easily.
She has no supervision, I have too much.
Her parents were hardly ever on the show.
They had little knowledge about where she went,
what she did, or the woodland creatures she interacted with.
That is the antithesis of my parents.
I have a tracker on my phone; I must stay within a fifty mile radius of my house.
Dora's parents worry about nothing, mine worry about everything.
My dad constantly yells
"The phone says you're at school"
while I stand in front of him at home.
Most of my exploring has been within the confines of my house.
When I was Dora's age, I got excited if I went into a room of the house
that was only used for special occasions.
I am an explorer, but my early expeditions
are not worth noting.
That eventually changed.
Planes and my bike took me
away from the dull walls of my house.
I've been on bike trails and in the Costa Rican Rainforest.
I've seen the wildness of New York City
and the Walmart and trailers of Camden, Arkansas.
My calves ached from walking up the hills in San Francisco
and my thighs hurt after my day long bike rides.
Dora taught me to look for adventure.
But she failed to teach me
how to deal with evil foxes and other foes.
Her interactions with Swiper are unbelievable.
Telling a fox to stop or to go away
does not actually work.
I know from experience.
Swipers are cruel; it takes years for them to realize that acting like an annoying fox
will get them nothing but hate.
Say "Swiper no swiping"
all day long Dora.
make me believe situations can be
resolved so easily.
I've told Swipers
I've told them
They tried to take any
worth or happiness I felt.
lurked behind me.
There was no where to avoid them.
No jungle gym protected me on the playground;
no summer camp was safe;
no elementary school was strong enough to stop them.
But I am an explorer and annoying foxes won't stop me.
Swipers are like bugs;
they are more threatened by you than you are of them.
I will always envy Dora.
She has more freedom than she should and
her only bully is an easily persuaded fox.
I accept the fact that I am not her.
I deal with more protective parents
and crueler Swipers.
But these irritating aspects of my life made me
stronger and wiser.
I am an explorer
completely different from Dora.