Friday, April 3, 2009

Play and Being Present

When I became pregnant, I really began evaluating how I wanted to play with my child. Many of you are probably thinking, "What is this woman talking about?" Allow me to explain. 
Imagine yourself on a playground with your child. Are you sitting on a bench to the side? Or are you sliding, swinging (or pushing), and running around with your child?
Imagine your child with a train set in front of him/her. Are you to the side watching or are you on all fours pushing trains too?
Imagine your child outside playing with chalk in the driveway. Are you watching or coloring?
Me? More times than not, I am getting dirty with my son and loving every minute of it! Sure, sometimes I am to the side at home. The Boy can play independently, but a big part of being present in his life is playing on his level and mine! We kick the soccer ball. We get wet and dirty. We do not need expensive games or loud electronics. We need one another to climb on, laugh with, and chase. We make every day tasks fun games. In doing so, we have a lot of fun together.  Alone, I see laundry as something that needs to get done, but with The Boy helping me, it is a fun game.
Through play, we continue to grow closer. The first time he said, "Mama, you play with me?" my heart melted. Some of the games and talk might be silly, but the giggles, smiles, and belly laughs will live forever in my mind.
Submitted to the PhD in Parenting Carnival of Play.


Damselfly said...

I'm usually there with my boy playing, but now that I'm pregnant and tired all the time, sometimes I just gotta sit down and watch!

Anonymous said...

I'm with Damselfly. Before #2 came along, I was much better at getting down and playing with #1. Although I have found that this is what a baby carrier is great for - with the little one sleeping on my back, I can do almost everything I could do otherwise.

Amber said...

I originally looked forward to Sammi being old enough to play by herself at the park, but now that she is, I miss running around, going down slides and jumping on the bridges. She shoos me away most of the time, but I still get face time when it comes to the swings!

Christina | said...

It makes me sad that I can't play with Oliver in all these ways. Drawing and stacking blocks are fine, but my back just doesn't allow me to wrestle or climb playground equipment. I'm rarely sitting on a bench though, I try to interact as much as I can, even if I can't actively participate ;-)

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