Our kids are at an age where they can endlessly enjoy full-on creative play. (Long may it last!) Usually, our 6-year old imagines herself a school teacher, a mother or a vet with all of the required outfit changes, appointments and diary writings. Our 4-year old, on the other hand, is currently all about construction toys.
Don’t you just love the beautiful chaos of children playing? I certainly do. And rather than always using the moments where they are engrossed in play ‘to get something done’, I often embrace the stimuli that their play creates to bring my mind into the present.
My response to their subtle invitation to call me to the present does vary. If one of them has literally asked me to join in, I may indeed decide to do so. And once I’ve entered their imaginary world, I am always impressed by how all concept of time simply vanishes. It allows me to, for a while, put aside that endless list of things to do. If, however, they seem quite happy doing their own thing, I may simply take a seat amidst the chaos, close my eyes and use the distractions around me to bring my mind into the present moment.
The kids have learned to be respectful of either response to their call for my presence. When I choose to enter into their world with them, they can tell that I really want to be there. When I opt to sit still instead, they intuitively know that mama will be calmer and more positive after. In either scenario, I am mindful of them and their chaos.
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