My Word For 2015 Is Play

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Lizzie Lau

I’ve been working on my plan for 2015; not resolutions, but real, actionable, and attainable goals.  I’m really excited about this year!

While I was making my lists and putting deadlines on my calendar I realized that I was leaving out the most important thing, FUN!  I’ve been focused on slowly building my business so that by the time my daughter is in school full time, I will have enough work to fill my time, and be earning enough money to cover our expenses AND save for our future.  What I forget sometimes is that I need to prioritize and schedule play.  Not just for her, for both of us, and most importantly together!  

From the time she was born we’ve been together nearly 24/7 and I’ve always played with her.  It was me on the floor with her, coloring, putting puzzles together, mashing play doh.  It was me in the sandbox with her, building shapes that she could crush.  It was me in the pool with her, teaching her to swim like a mermaid.  Our early years were blissful, and I’m so grateful that together we built a relationship on a foundation of love and trust and joy.  At one point my Mom was watching us play and asked, “She’s your best friend in the world right now, isn’t she?”  I know a lot of parents, and experts, say that we can’t be our child’s friend, but I disagree.  If she’s my favorite person in the world, the person I most want to spend time with, isn’t she my friend?

We read together, eat together, snuggle up and watch tv together, paint each other’s nails, and brush each other’s hair, but since I started working more, I’ve relied on others to play with her, mostly her friends, her cousins, and my parents.  I make sure she has plenty of time to play with friends on the playground after school or on playdates, but more and more I feel like I’m watching, coaching, and refereeing her play with others.  

As she has become more and more independent, I’ve relinquished my role as her playmate, and we both lost something.  I got a taste of it the other night when she started dancing around the living room at my parents’ house.  My Mom and I got in line behind her and mimicked her dance moves until we were all laughing and exhausted.  It felt so great to let go of being the grown-up and play like a 4-year-old.  So yesterday in my parents’ rose garden after she performed a dance number for us, she asked us each to take a turn dancing.  There was no music, no judgment, no inhibition.  We danced with the abandon of preschoolers, and she loved it.  From the expressions on my Mom and Dad’s faces, I could tell they loved it too.

So, my number one goal for 2015 is to spend more time playing.  I’m even putting it in my calendar!

2 thoughts on “My Word For 2015 Is Play”

  1. Thanks Tacy! V and I had a chat about the things we love to play and picked several fun things to do that we both love. I just can't play dolls or pet shop very often. The rules she makes up on the fly blow my mind.

  2. Thanks for posting this! It's a great reminder, and as I read it, I was feeling a tad bit guilty. Our lives have gotten so busy that when we're home, I'm protective of my time. A few times the kids have asked me to play with them and I just want to relax, so I tell them no. Reading this reminded me that they are not always going to want to play with me, and I should work harder to make time for play.
    Beautiful pic of V!

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