Playing like a child

Lego When was the last time you played like a child? Like, really got wrapped up in the imagination, the play, the story?

You’d think that being a parent, you’d have plenty of time to play. To get lost in the game. To lose track of time and realise that you’ve been playing for hours. To create your own empire. To just….Play.

Today, I played like a child. Saturday is ‘dad-venture’ day, where I have the children for a few hours. We usually go to a park, a swim, the art gallery, museum or somewhere outdoors. But today was different. Today, we went to my parents and got out my old Lego set.

Now you need to realise that after having six children, my parents have a fairly big collection of Lego. As a child (and teenager!) I spent many, many hours playing Lego.

On reflection, and watching my own children play, y’know what I’ve realised? Children play without agenda, without a destination. The story is fluid. The difference between black and white is crystal clear. It’s imagination at it’s best.

Today, I made a pretty girls house for my daughter, who inhabited it with pirates, knights and yellow islander women. My son sailed his Robin Hood Lego man around in a 90’s style police boat equipped with a frikkin’ laser. I built a castle in a deserted island equipped with trap-door, bows, arrows, 6 treasure chests, and a mish-mash of pirates, knights, spacemen, workmen, bandits, divers (sounds like the Village People!), all with fancy helmets, more friggin’ lasers, swords, battle axes and spears. Yes, I totally got lost in the moment.

When was the last time you got caught up in the moment? When you played without agenda or destination?

When was the last time you played?

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7 comments

  1. Bootstrap Bride

    I was probably about eleven. From twelve on, I spent my free time reading and listening to music. Walking the dog. Trying to break into cliques of peers. I remember that I hit some kind of “play wall” before a cousin, which was partly responsible for us going our separate ways socially. I was scornful of her wish to “play with toys” for so long, that I’m suddenly surprised to wonder why I felt that way.

    Nice that you can still do it! I wonder if I could stand to, if I had children?

  2. karenskqq

    I treasure play! Yeah for having a granddaughter! We jump on the furniture, the bed, we hide and jump at Papa. We make rabbit traps out of cardboard boxes. We play like she is a rodeo bucking horse and I’m a rodeo cowboy as she busts out of a pillow corral. Then she goes home and I collapse.

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