Last weekend, my six year old son was given a bright orange balloon. He brought it home, and we played a game together where we hit the balloon to each other across the living room, not letting it touch the ground. We laughed our heads off as we dove for that balloon. I really enjoyed playing with him.
Every day since, all he wants to do when we are home is play that balloon game. Now that’s good and all, but I have things I need to do when I’m home from work. Things I need to get done around the house. I work full time, so for the little time that I am home, there is a list of tasks that must be done. The majority of times that he’d ask me to play with him, I’d respond with I can’t right now, I have to fold the laundry, sorry I need to empty the dishwasher, I’m cooking dinner at the moment, sorry I have to make the school lunches etc. etc. etc. You get the picture. Believe me, I’d much rather be playing with that balloon and my son, but my mind convinces me that I have too many other responsibilities and chores to get done first.
He is so happy when I do play with him, which is why he keeps nagging me to do it every ten minutes. It would be a sad moment if he didn’t want to play with me anymore. I know that I should make the most of it while it lasts. Yet, I still find it difficult to make it a priority when other things still need to be done. So often I think, first I will get all my jobs done around the house, and then I will play with him. But before I know it, I’ve run out of time.
But what is more important? Getting the laundry washed and folded, serving dinner on time, or making special memories together with my son? I guess that I still need to learn that some things can wait, but I find it so hard to just put it down and play. Us adults do need to play more often; Forget our daily duties for a moment, and take some time out to enjoy the little things in life such as swinging on a swing, or hitting a balloon. It’s not being lazy, it’s being smart and it’s being a good mum. I’m still working on that.