Abraham sits on the floor with a wooden spoon, 2 small mixing bowls, and an empty gallon jug of milk. He stirs the spoon around the bowl, picks up the milk jug and pours it into the bowl, puts it down, reclaims his spoon and finishes mixing. He is completely focused and completely open to play. (Now he puts the milk jug in the drawer of baking things).
This creative-drama teaching-mama couldn’t be prouder.
Bubby, my maternal grandmother, swears she was the first one to play pretend with me, sitting on her porch, “eating” ice cream. Did that event lead to who I have become? Will Abraham carry the memory (probably not consciously) of this free play and continue to play as a child, teenager, and adult? I don’t even mean in the theatre, I mean in his whole life.
(now he is trying to balance the milk jug upside down in the other bowl)
I see him working so hard, playing so hard. I observe him, narrate what he does, add in objects to compliment his play. But then it is time for a diaper change and he screams, throws his head back, and tries to escape my evil clutches.
And I think to myself, I must do this too. In what parts of my own life do I rear my head back and try to escape?
And I think he and I have the same reasons: lack of control. When we play, we are free. But then we have to change the diaper and leave the comfort of freedom behind.
It is so hard to be a baby. So easy too. I’m so grateful for the time to see him struggle and see him be free.