Playing With Your Kid

26 Jul

As my first born was changing from a gooey oblivious newborn into an attentive and curious infant, I started to notice something: I am the funniest person alive!

Realistically, a baby will laugh at just about anything. However, I prefer to think of myself as one of the great comedians of the 21st century.

One of the greatest things about having a young child is that YOU (parents, immediate caregivers, etc) are the world. Of course that kind of responsibility can be rather daunting but having the unconditional love of a brand new human is quite the ego booster.

Imagine getting smiles and adoring looks of awe every time you walked in the room! It takes very little effort to just walk into a room but the child still smiles! Put in a little effort by waving, make a funny face, or a high pitched noise and you’ll up your awesomeness ten-fold.

The noises and funny faces are how you play with a baby! It’s so easy! You barely have to do anything and, still, the child is amazed!

As I cooed and squealed and flared my nostrils and crossed my eyes for my baby, I received endless amounts of positive feedback. I was in a little bubble of bliss, just my baby and me: the most hilarious mother in the world!

But it didn’t stay that way. My child got older and eventually a funny whistle could no longer topple him to the floor in fits of giggles. Now, as an almost four year old, my son has a great imagination and can play make-believe for hours. It’s no longer easy and effortless and also, it’s just not practical. I can’t be at his beck and call all day long, even though he would like me to.

I’ve heard that some parents never play with their kids, that’s just not their style. I understand that, especially if you have more than one kid. But I do like to play with my son, just not endlessly all day long.

My mom didn’t really play with my brother and I when we were young. She spent lots of time with us and, as we got older, we played a lot of card/board games. But all the childish games of imagination and silliness? That was for my brother and I. And it was fine! I hope, as my boys get older, I will probably leave them alone with their games more and more.

I started thinking about this because of a random memory I had several days ago: I remember my mom following me around the house while we both flapped our arms and pretended to be butterflies, all the while saying, “flutter flutter flutter.” I also remember thinking, I can’t believe I got her to do this!!

I knew it was out if the ordinary for my mom to play an actual imagination game but obviously I did enjoy this rare occurrence. I did remember it after all!

So, even though it can be annoying and frustrating, I do think it’s important to play with your children. They will remember it and love you for it!


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