Happy Valentine's Day

Roses are red, violet's are blue, I have baked a special valentine just for you! Valentine's Day is February 14th.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Picketing Playdates

What happened to spontaneity?

I can't stand that there is never a ring at the door bell to ask for "Johnny" to come out and play. A friend will never just stop by so the kids could play and we could chat.
I know for a fact that most of my neighbors, friends, and even family would be mortified by such a ripple in their routine waters. Everyone is so stuck on making sure their house is in pristine order before exposing it to others that we have lost what is really important...connecting with each other.
We all have children people! Toys will be on the floor, dishes in the sink and pee is probably around the toilet bowl. Yes, of course I try to keep all of this to a minimum (for my own sanity), but I am upset that it may even cross my mind to think about how my house may look with a stop over visit. The peer "motherhood" pressure bears its ugly head.
I am trying to get back to the basics. With a child on the spectrum, a scheduled playdate may be necessary to prepare my son. A scheduled playdate is necessary for safety (if the other mom needs to drop off their child). Other than that, I am picketing playdates and wish for the "old" fashioned days to return.

As children, were you too busy to play in the neighborhood? As children, did you run over and ring the door of your neighbors house? As children, did it seem simpler, maybe even happier?


Anonymous said...

I have an autistic child too, and work too hard, it seems, to try and set up playdates.

I totally understand how you feel. I grew up on a farm, and all my playtime had to be scheduled, too, but I wish for the casual, comfortable interaction we hear about happening decades ago.

Of course, that may have brought its own difficulties, less nostalgic, but some spontaneity, like you said, could be a good thing.

Anonymous said...

I also agree,
I too have an autistic son.

I never realized how starved we were for simple natural interaction,especial joint attention activities..until I was babysitting my young (typical) niece.

Everyhting was so easy with her...I kept thinking WOW! So THAT is how communicating with your own kids is supposed to feel.

I grew up around alot of kids (my mother had a daycare) but I just never stepped back long enough to really notice.

With our son, I found myself constantly thinking ahead and "editting" my communication with him so I could be clear on what was taking place.(Like a mother bird..digestion what he needed to know then feeding him tiny amounts so he could grow.)

It felt like a part of me was finaly able to stretch out and walk about.The "brain cramp" was gone.I was out of the box.

I did not realise I had that much tension in my body.

If I felt that way...how would he feel.

Lesley said...

Well said! My children are older now (17 and 22), but I didn't worry about having a "pristine" house. Our house was lived in, and still is. I'd go over to some friend's houses and I couldn't figure out where their children played, because their house was so perfect. When I watch the HGTV channel about people renovating their houses, I've heard the moderator say something like, "Well, they have the 'problem' of children's toys all over." That's not a problem. That should be a joy.


Award Winning Cookie Cutter and Kit