November 15, 2011 by Carin
I am going to preface this confession with this, I love my kids more than anything, they fill my heart up with so much love that it could burst; I would do anything to protect them, keep them safe and make them happy. But to be honest, one thing I hate is playing! I am a stay-at-home mom who hates to play toddler play and it can make some days feel really long. It is the jumping around from one thing to the next. For example, Grace and I love to paint, but when it lasts only 5 minutes and she is on to something else, I go bonkers. Why can’t we paint for 30 minutes, why only 5? I realize, she is only 2.5 yrs old, and this is how they work, but really, it is hard for an adult, any adult. Playing kitchen and having to eat the same cupcake over and over while faking delight at the deliciousness of said cupcake and having my glass filled with tea numerous times. Doing the same thing over and over or the lack of attention to anything can make some days long. Trying to make a suggestion and directing the play to something kind of interesting, usually results in being shut down by my bundle of energy. She want to play what she wants when she wants, it is her play time.
I realize this is my problem and not Grace’s problem, I start to think of what I could be doing around the house, emails I need to respond to and dinner I could be prepping instead of playing.
I know that kids need parents that play with them; it helps them learn about themselves and their surroundings, and how to relate to things. They often use play to work through things they have seen around them. It is valuable in so many ways that parents can’t get away from it when in the midst of toddlerhood.
So I do play because it makes her happy and seeing her discover new things, laugh and have fun is worth more than any feeling I have towards her style of play. I suck it up, eat my cupcake, and drink my tea, laugh and smile. It makes her day and always puts a smile on her face. Isn’t that what playing with your kids is all about? And I constantly remind myself of that everyday.
Do you feel this way about toddler play or something else you do with your kids?