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WHEN DID I LAST REALLY “PLAY”? WHAT DID PLAY AWAKEN IN ME?
I played with my niece Heaven and Amelia. This was 2 different occasions that I look back to and smile.
Heaven- her and I went to a playground. I didn’t use my phone not even to take pictures because I was playing with her. Actually in the moment going on the slides with her, playing tag etc. I was completely in the moment. I felt her trust and love which fulfilled me :). I actually spent the day with her as she is a human being vs a child. We had conversations and all, she is 3.
Amelia- My cousins came to visit and Amelia and I really were able to connect and play. She put make up on me so gently, I expected her to be rough since she is 3 and “a baby”. We had conversations about make up and what colors she wanted to put on me. We played connect for and she called me “my love”. I was shocked because she rarely gets along with adults but she jumped on me, hugged me and felt sad to leave. I was able to calm her down so she wouldn’t cry and would be excited for next time.
This awaken trust and love within me. We were carefree and in the moment. Who cares about how the make up looked or how we looked running around we were happy and creative. I felt free and looked up to. This increased my confidence and mood.
I played in the ocean a little couple of weeks ago. The sense of freedom was obvious. It was difficult to let myself go.
Yesterday… 70’s rock and roll, loud. That a lot of those guys and girls are not here any more, but their spirit is.
Last weekend- I played music in front of over 1000 people for the first time in over 13 years. I had some self doubt before I went up on stage, but once I got up there I wasn’t nervous at all ….and it just came naturally to me. This whole experience awakened a part of me that I almost forgot existed & I ended up surprising myself
Wonderful and inspiring, Lauryn
I can play solitaire games on my phone almost endlessly, and it’s sort of a meditation. I also like to swing in my granddaughters’ back yard sometimes. I always liked swinging, and now my glider rocker, which I’m sitting in.
My grandchildren are growing up so fast, and with COVID I haven’t seen them in so long. They are generally my play partners. So now I realize I haven’t played in a long time. I love reading children’s stories in character, telling children’s stories, playing board games, dancing…but my husband is not a good play partner. He’s too reality grounded. I need to do find some new play partners.
I think it was last year where I played Marco Polo with my cousins. We haven’t been meeting each other much as covid is still a major issue in the country. We have had four covid waves now….
<- I play fetch with these guys almost every day.
I find play calming. It passes the time. Alone I play solitaire and the occasional crossword. We are a board game family (Parcheesi is a contact sport for us). So that is less calming and brings us together. So I enjoy the connections. As for awakening, it is echoes of the past. Continuity.
The last time I played was dancing with my family in the backyard. It awakened connection, laughter and a joy for the moment.
Playing outside in the sunshine with my grandchildren….so much fun, laughter, excitement, freedom….reminding me of how much I miss this all in my daily life.
Evey time I lead a therapeutic laughter session. Childlike play is at the fore.
With seven grandchildren, the youngest at three and the oldest sixteen, I get a chance to be playful often, or rather, I get a chance to try and keep up!
But here’s my story about being “in” play with a child as an adult:
Some years ago, I was on my office floor talking and playing with a young client I’ll call Morgan. I have a four-foot high Treehouse, with three levels, ladders, pulleys (to get up there, silly!) and of course kitchens, bedrooms, bathrooms and all under a leafy make-believe tree canopy. For some children, during our course of play, like Morgan, I could achieve my counseling work interspersed with moving our tiny “family” up, down, and all around our tree house.
One day Morgan and I were moving our little family of characters through routine household chores of going shopping, loading groceries into baskets and hoisting them up with pulleys to the kitchen, making food, playing games, going to bed and getting up for school. Morgan’s person, whom she named ‘Sasha,” had just brushed her teeth and was climbing the treehouse ladder up to her bedroom to fetch her backpack for school. Once there, standing in her bedroom, Sasha announced, “I need to pee!” Kevin says, “Okay, I’ll wait here for you. Sasha pauses, turns, walks past our treehouse bathroom and up to me saying, while clunking her feet on the floor for emphasis, “No. For real!” And Kevin, still in the throes of play but five seconds behind, blinks, and realizes that Sasha was now Morgan, in real life, and Morgan needed to go pee! Kevin, feeling a little dumb there stuck in my role, let go of my character and slowly got up from the floor and walked my first grade client, who was now patiently waiting at the door, down the hall to the bathrooms.
I’m not sure this would be considered ‘play’ but last night I took my son out to dinner to The Melting Pot for his birthday. This is a fondue style restaurant so we enjoyed a 4 course meal. Eating/cooking fondue style is different and a new experience so it was fun and enjoyable.
This past Saturday, I played in some very small waves. I had my heavy board that can catch anything, and I really had fun out there! As for what it awakened in me… I think play always awakens our child-like spirit, that part of us that is innocent and free and doesn’t take everything so seriously.
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