It’s a beautiful thing

Author: natalie  //  Category: Life with children

Thank goodness school is back in session. And that ringing of the school bell and seeing all the kids head back conjures up all sorts of thoughts.

By summer’s end I crave a schedule and routine almost as bad as I’ll desire an unstructured life come May. That’s how my pendulum swings.

But as much as I like knowing what’s coming next, I’ll still be a copycat of the much younger set and take recess. I can run, skip and bounce my pigtails with any kind of shenanigans I see fit.

There’s a great poem about how we learn all we ever really need to know in kindergarten. If you’ve never read it, have a look, truer words have never been spoken. But in conjunction with that, we also learn a great deal on the playground . . . having recess.

In light of school testing that has become the end all, be all in modern education, sadly, recess has been disappearing from the lives of children. How counterproductive. I could go on a real rant about it, but that’s not really where I intended for this to go so I’ll refrain.

Much like beauty being in the eye of the beholder, sometimes having fun requires a shift in perspective, and learning there are cycles of work and play. Who among us doesn’t need to learn that some sustained attention will be rewarded with some letting off of steam? Or that work can be made fun by a shift in one’s attitude?

I’m quite proud to say I’m a master at making the mundane enjoyable. How else could I survive fifteen and a half years as a domestic engineer? And it’s a learned skill, I think.

I have all the playground equipment I’ll ever need installed in a nifty little spot between my ears. I can take recess whenever and however I want. All my best pals are there, too. Everyone gets along. Sunshine, butterflies and 72 degrees happily coexist. Or I can play alone.

And the real things taught me a thing or two as well.

Life see-saws back and forth…sometimes I’m up and sometimes I’m down, and that’s OK.

There are times I have to struggle to climb a tall ladder, only to feel the exhilaration of sliding down after all that hard work.

Then other times things swirl around in really fast merry-go-round circles, but I know it will eventually slow and even stop.

It all gave me a reference point. And even if I’m supposed to be doing something else nobody knows I’m recessing. I’ll come back when I’m good and ready. Shoot, I might even pick up my ball and go home!

I burn off all sorts of restless energy which allows me to settle in and do what needs doing.

We don’t have to miss recess and it doesn’t have to be all in our heads, either. We can decide to have fun and/or enjoy anything we want to. We can have a carefree mindset and frolic through just about anything.

Any one of us can take recess in our minds . . . any time we see fit. And thank goodness for now, no one can take it away. That’s a beautiful thing.

 © 2012 Natalie Whatley

2 Responses to “It’s a beautiful thing”

  1. Bert Marshall Says:

    Everyone I know needs to read this column. I mean it. Of course, being your doppelganger, I know and practise this philosophy and it allows us to go into each day, excited to see where we will end up. Good upbeat and positive writing!

  2. admin Says:

    Positive and upbeat….that’s my aim…99.9% of the time. LOL! Melancholy…my arch nemesis!! Thanks for your kind words, as always :)

Leave a Reply