Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Playground

we've been spending all if not most of our waking hours at the playground lately and not only is it one of the best foundations for instilling the importance of an active lifestyle, it's the ultimate energy exhauster with Max just simply needing to sit on the stroller to be conked out for the next 1.5 hours.

setting that aside, does going to the playground give you some level of angst? it was quite chillaxing (in the lightest sense of the term) when Max was a little one because I was always there within an arms reach of him. if your kid was in a position that was beyond my comfort level, i had no qualms about picking Max up and moving him along. Or, sticking an appendage of mine happily in between them two so as they didnt cause any {pontential) harm to my child. Easy! nowadays, the playground experience is not just about the physicality of playing but the social interaction with other kids of various sizes and ages.

Max playing happily with a blue cup, showing it to me, picking up and dumping some sand.
Little girl (+/- a few months from Max's age) comes up from nowhere, RIPS the cup out of Max's hand.
Max looks at me, and backs off  from the little girl.
I intercept the cup, and say "No, he is playing with this."
Little girl's mom comes up from nowhere, but keeping a distance and says, "actually it's hers."
I let go of the cup, give the mom and sneer and distract Max with other fun stuff thanking him for sharing. All this as im cooking on the inside thinking, [expletive] Lady maybe you should teach your kid how to ask for things when the opportunity is there..or correct the little one on how to behave before they become a menace to society. 

Max playing with a dump truck merrily. 
little boy +/- a few months from Max, comes up to him and takes the dump truck from Max mid play and scoots off.
I trace this kid to a mom and grandma just standing there doing shit all as their little tike menaces around the playground.
again, [expletive]. teach your kid how to ask for things appropriately! we'd be happy to share 

Little 5 year old girls playing in a tree house
young toddler comes in and tries to play
little girls: "get her out of here! we don't want her here!"
girls can be so cruel

ok rant over even though there are so many more examples. i do feel a bit more forgiving with parents of multiple children because one needs more than 1 set of eyes and arms with 1 kid, let alone more than 1. episodes like this make me want to put Max in some sort of protective bubble where he doesnt have to be exposed to poor behavior that he could learn and take home with us. or maybe take him to a playground that doesnt have too many kids? but really what long term benefit would he get from that right? he needs to learn right from wrong and a playground environment is a pool of scenarios. cant he just play somewhere where people all get along?! how about where 100% of the parents are mindful of their kids' actions? CANT I PROTECT MY BABY FOREVER? boo hoo. all this set aside, the best teacher on how to react is from the parents right? (correct me if im wrong). so although id love to protect Max in a reactive manner and turn up the heat a little, im actively trying to be calm, take the incidents and turning them into a learning opportunity. of course, there are times that i cant help but react emotionally because being a punching bag isn't ok either.

On a positive note, we love the playground despite everything. Max is learning to share toys with other kids in his cute, "want this?" way but not really giving you an option because it literally means Take IT to him. I love that Max is exposed to all sorts of kids from all walks of life. Last week there was this toddler about a year older than Max and they ran together and climbed up a tree stump and even transferred sand together from a bucket into a dump truck! (simple things in life right?). although Max was wondering why this kid was following him and kept looking at me when the older kid was copying what Max was doing, it was so darned cute that i just stood back and let it go on for its entirety. As well, Max has learned to handle some rejection; a few days ago these two little girls were making cake out of some sand tools and when Max heard cake, he tells me, "i love cake mamma!" then i tell him to go up to the little girls and ask for some. so he goes to them, asks, gets rejected but hung around repeatedly asking them, "cake? cake?" LOL! I kept coaching him on how to ask them nicely and even offering an alternative like a donut or a muffin if they didnt want to share their pretend cake. ultimately, they kept saying no but not in a mean way (more like what-the-heck-doesnt-this-baby-understand-No kinda way). Max just giggled on and when they left to play elsewhere he went immediately into the tree house and took the "cake" and we shared it happily under the shade.

excuse me while i melt!


  1. Yes and yes! I love DD having play time at the playground but I hate having to manage the social situations!! She recently developed a weird territorial bent where she refuses to go on any slide with any other child on it. Because she still wants to slide, she will get upset and cry with disappointment while trying to climb back down. I think she must have had a traumatic experience at a slide recently, but I'm finding it hard to give her the playtime she needs while avoiding other kids and honouring her aversion (hopefully a very temporary one)! I should totally blog about this!! And we should do a play date at an isolated playground; I am an attentive momma and I hate when others aren't!!

    1. yes! how about the playground under the bridge near David Lam park?

    2. Is that the one under Cambie bridge? How does next week sound? Best to visit that playground when it isn't windy and cold. Also, what time does Max nap? We usually do not nap until after 2. I will email u my digits! :)


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