Let's play again. Like we did last summer!
We were made to play outside.
Do you remember it? Those days that seemed to last forever? Sun kissed and drenched in either swimming pool chlorine or salty ocean water. Tree-houses or dens filled with your mother’s old cutlery. Pretending to be squirrels gathering food for the winter. Pretending to be cops or robbers. Pretending to be cowgirls. Baking mud cakes as if the president were on his way for tea. Carefully placing your toys and dolls in formations or circles and shouting orders. Face dirty, hands dirty, feet always barefoot. Happy.
Tell me why we stopped? Can you think of reasons other than:
We had to become grown-ups at some point.
Are these valid reasons? Really think about it. Are they? Do we REALLY not have time? Or do we use our free time to scroll past thousands of posts? Posts we envy by the way, irrespective of whether they are true. Do we use our free time to stress about the day ahead or the day that lies behind us?
It is BECAUSE of work and responsibilities and time limits that we NEED to make time for play. Play does not have to mean dressing up in your mother’s dresses and spanking naughty teddy bears (sounds weird right?). To me, play includes nature, laughter, using your body to move, feeling free and losing track of time.
I see this so clearly with my son and it was more evident now that I can compare it to lockdown life. Netflix, controlled YouTube or video games provide great distraction and offers parents time to get things done. But that kid, the one staring at the screen, becomes a different specie when he is able to run around outside, barefoot and carefree. When he is making it up as he goes and using whatever is lying around to build and play.
Whether you have your own kids, or you spot kids at a beach or a park, take some time to observe them. Observe how they laugh and roll and fall over and figure things out. They radiate the essence of humanity. If you were to ask yourself whether that is the way you want to feel I am going to guess and answer is a big fat yes.
So, find something. Actively find something you could do that would give you the same feeling. Surprise yourself a little.
Lots of Love