What do you expect me to do?
Sunday has come around again, it’s raining, we are doing a voluntary quarantine so that we can safely go to grandma and papa’s for Thanksgiving and we have opted as a family to have no electronics, so that we can do more as a family. Sometimes this works great other times we are breaking up fights and storming to rooms. With our world being so fast paced it is hard to see the whites of each other’s eyes. We do make it a point to sit down and eat dinners together which is great but right when we are all done everyone goes in their separate directions to get back to whatever has been going on with the devices.
Growing up we obviously didn’t have as many electronics to keep us busy. We had to find things to do or our parents would find stuff for us to do. I always knew that the words “I’m bored” should never come out of my mouth with my mom standing close by. Thirty plus years ago is way different than it is today, but only in certain aspects. I think back then we didn’t know of all the things going on in the world because we didn’t have instant access. We were willing to go find things to do because we didn’t want to be dragged into helping mom mop the floors, or mow the lawn. So we would go and knock on neighbor’s doors that we knew had kids and we would ask if they could play. We would take out our bikes and ride “just up the road” and get back home hours later, we would take out the scrap wood and create some new toy with it, it seems that back then we were so intent on not being bored that we worked hard at finding ways around it.
Now that I have my own kids I am finding my hubby and I have to actually schedule in times where they may find themselves bored, just for the pure fact that in these times they actually get creative, they play and interact with each other, they take walks with the dog. They find things to do because they know getting on their devices in not an option and if they say they are bored too close to my ears I will find things for them to do that they may not like. I love to watch them play and interact. I love making sure they get bored so that they get active and creative. I never knew a few years ago that my oldest daughter paints and draws so well, I love that my middle daughter takes on challenges and creates solutions for them, and my little man gets his rollerblades out, even his skateboard at times and gets active. I love that during my “bored times” I can create and read and even get a nap in. I love that my hubby’s bored times gets new flooring put down and projects that have been rattling around in his head get done.
Somewhere along the line being bored was a negative thing, I would love to say here and now that it is far from negative. Our brains have gotten so complacent with the electronics in front of us and the day to day jobs and tasks that we have to get done that the simple things get lost in the mix. By being bored people are forced to find something to do, and hopefully the “somethings” they find to do are positive and cause them to stretch their imaginations. Over the past few months we have been forced more often than not into boredom, and I can say in some of those moments not so positive things have happened like eating a whole back of chips, or spending the day watching Facebook videos, but for the most part projects have been accomplished, crafts have been finished and new opportunities have been researched. Small trips have been done, and small gatherings have been planned. New games have been played and new hobbies have been started.
In the eyes of kids being bored is not the greatest thing to be, especially when they are being forced into it, and informing them that they have it better now than when I was a kid doesn’t help, and quite frankly they probably don’t believe me when I say it because I don’t believe it myself. I actually loved being a kid and the freedoms that I had. I strongly believe that my kids should have that same type of childhood it’s just a bit harder to give to them, but not impossible. So for all those mommas and dads too who hear “I am bored” on a constant basis, just remember there is a whole big world out there to explore with your kids. So take the dog on a walk in the rain, finally climb the tree in the back yard, pull out some material and some patterns and see what you can create, read a book together, pull out the Monopoly game, get a Uno game going and see how loud you get, find what you can do together and do it. That is what most kids want, to do something with mom and dad, treasure the times you have because it does go fast. If you find that you are the one saying “I’m bored” because of no kids all of the above still applies, except you probably would do it more with people your age and probably some wine, whatever it is you do, find time to be bored, it is worth it. Until next time:
“I’m bored’ is a useless thing to say. I mean, you live in a great, big, vast world that you’ve seen none percent of. Even the inside of your own mind is endless; it goes on forever, inwardly, do you understand? The fact that you’re alive is amazing, so you don’t get to say ‘I’m bored.”Louis C.K.