Monday, June 18, 2012

For the love, Mamas!

Here is my disclaimer: I have been a parent for exactly almost four years.

Here is my concern: Mamas are being told (CONSTANTLY) that they are supposed to be playing with (read: entertaining) their children.

Now, I am totally sold on the idea that parents should be attentive to their children.  It hurts my feelings when I am talking to someone's iFace (read: top of head which is the only part not buried in your iGadget), and it hurts a child's feelings to be similarly disregarded.  Certainly, I think that kids need real attention and honest regard.  Respect if you will.  They are people with needs and ideas and thoughts.


Mama, they can play.  Don't play for them!  Don't come up with ideas to entertain them.  STOP with the 101 ways to entertain your kids on hot summer days.  Holy Cows!  Give them a spoon and a pitcher of water and stick them in the shade while you hang out your darn clothes.  Parents are responsible for guiding their children toward being thoughtful, respectful, responsible, healthy people who can think!

If we continue to entertain them, they will lose the ability to entertain themselves, and they will become people who need to be entertained to learn, worship and engage (read: passive, uncreative lumps).


Wait you say!  How about stimulation and enrichment.  Shooooot.  Give them real eye contact when they tell you a story or when you are nursing them, and they will blossom.  When you are neck deep in 101 ways to entertain your bored toddler (read: 101 messes you just made in your own house that literally keep their attention for 3 seconds), you wear yourself out on busy work.  Stop, stop, stop.  Put down that paint.  Sit down on the floor and look at that little changing face, then go back and finish the things that are weighing on you.  Play is the work of the child not the parent.


My kids won't play alone, you say.  Yeah, I know.  My oldest was like that, but now that I can't play for him (read: I have three kids under four) he is getting more and more creative.  I have learned one thing is more important than all of the other stuff: childproofing.  If you don't want things broken, put it away.  If you don't want to pick up all the puzzle pieces, put them up.  If you don't want them to color on the walls, don't leave crayons around.  Make the environment simple and inviting.  Blocks, legos, string (obviously a safe length) and a neutral doll or two will keep them rummaging and thinking and you free to get your stuff done so when, they need some attention, you are ready to be attentive.

Also, movies and TV don't count.  Sure, they are tools to use so you can safely shower two or three times a week, but TV only numbs their little minds.  Sometimes parents need a break, so by all means, numb away, but remember that is what you are doing.

BTW...I totally stole these ideas from John Rosemond...great reading!


Remember, you are doing your best.  We all are.  Read a book to yourself.  Listen to your music.  Remember YOU. ARE. A. PERSON! not a toy...

Now I have to go make sure Laine hasn't destructed my bedroom...

1 comment:

  1. Don't forget the box of "dress up" play clothes. Who knows whom they will become!!


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