My new rhythm means that I have time for so many more things.
And one thing that I realised I have been missing is time to play.
And I don’t mean playing with the kids, although that is fun and important, but time for me to play.
For me play is a way of adding colour, of adding interest to the ordinary palette of my everyday life. Adding a vibrancy to the ‘get up, make lunches, eat breakfast, do dishes etc.’ routine.
From the last five years of head down parenting, I have kind of lost touch with what I like to do to play.
Realising this I have been slowly making sure that I add touches of fun and vibrancy to my mostly monochrome clothing palette. Fun nail colour choices, or bright accessories or shoes is one way I have been deliberately adding playful touches to my day.
Then for Christmas my cousin gave our family a colouring poster to work on together. We had it out over the holidays and it gave us such wonderful family time, all around the table filling in a different part. But I was often the one there longer than the girls, or even pulling it out after they had gone to bed.
I’m not an artist, and I’m useless at Pictionary but I suddenly realised how much I like to colour. So I got myself a grown-up colouring pad, my own set of pencils (hands off kids!) and I spend some time when I feel like it just filling in the space between the lines, choosing colours that complement or contrast.
Adding colour to black and white pages, and allowing myself to play.
It is so good, a little way for me to remember the importance of play, and how much everyone young or old needs it.