My granddaughter was out my window last night. She’s 12 and the fact she still comes over to see me fills me with joy. I know there will come a day soon when she’ll be too busy to hang out with me. I hope that never does happen but it’s the natural order of things.
When I have my grandkids, I always try to give them opportunities to talk about things that may be bothering them, questions they may have that they aren’t quite comfortable asking parents. Sometimes just to let them vent their frustrations. Everyone needs an outlet and I try to be theirs.
When I went on vacation with my daughter, her husband and their two girls, I told the girls if they needed private Grandma time, they only had to ask. I was asked by each girl several times a day! It gave each of them a chance to have special attention and they got to play whatever game they wanted without having to consider anyone else’s preferences. We’d play games, we’d read or tell each other stories, talk about anything they wanted to, talk about what happened that day and what the next day’s adventures would be.
That’s what last night was about. The girls have been coming over one at a time forever just to have that time with me. Since I live behind their house, they have easy access to me. I try to spend as much time with my grandsons as I can to give them that, also.
But what I’ve realized as my children have grown is that they’ve never outgrown their need to have that from me, either. What I’ve realized lately is that I’ve been neglecting to put fun into our time together. Yes, we’re silly and laugh like crazy over ridiculous things. Yes, we go do fun things. But where are the games? We don’t play together anymore.
My challenge to you today (and for myself) is to find ways to incorporate play into your relationships. There’s something about sitting down to a board game, cards or even a puzzle with people you love. My mom loved Yahtzee and we have special, dear memories of her playing with us. Dad liked word games more and he’d always play some obscure word that we would look up thinking he was cheating. Sometimes, he was!
Get the kids, grown kids and yourself away from the tv and phone/computer/tablet, etc. Sit down and play a hands on game. As my grandkids have discovered, it’s a lot of fun to be doing something together where you’re looking into each eyes, watching expressions, acting silly or serious…interacting. It’s important and it’s getting to be a lost art.
I have you have fun today.