Friday, May 2, 2008

Redirecting: Just stories.


"You can't get on this truck," the 3-year-old boy said, towering from above as we walked into a new, unfamiliar mall play area. "It's for big kids. And, you're babies!"
Redirect to the slide.
Boy scurries over to the slide, hops on and blocks all entrances.

"You can't come up here. This is for Big Kids and you're babies."
Redirect to the airplane.
Boy runs over and hops onto a wing.

"You can't come up here. This airplane is for Big Kids and you're babies."
Redirect to other side where babyish toys stand. Spot half-dozing grandmother not paying an ounce of attention to boy.
"Is that your child?"
"Yes, did he do something?"
"Well, yes, he's blocking the equipment so my daughters cannot get on and calling them babies."
"Thank you for telling me."
Redirect to another location while grandmother scolds boy and makes him apologize.
"I'm sorry, Big Kids!" the boy yelled passing by and leaving them alone.

*****

An hour before dinner. A beautiful afternoon after a groggy rainy day. Wheels.
We were off for a walk.
Redirect. The story of my life right now. Redirect. Redirect. Redirect.
"Let's try a new walk today," I ring out.
"Yeah," the girls say, not knowing where we were heading in the first place.
"Walk," Jadyn whines.
"Walk!"
"We have to drive there, OK?"
"Walk!"
When we arrive we instantly see a dog romping through the grass.
My heart races. We've committed. There's no turning back without crying. Lots of it.
I hesitate. I wait.
Doggie goes off in the distance.
We get out and start walking.
We see more dogs. More dogs. More dogs.
I'm nervous, wondering how I get myself into these situations.
We walk to the edge where there are about a dozen dogs playing off leash in what is not a dog park.
An older man with his dog are about to leave and spot us. He trots his dog Mindy over and we meet.
"You don't want to go over there," he said. "Not with them."
"I wasn't going to," I tell him, adding that my daughters love to "hug" dogs.
"I'm John; who are you?"
We introduce ourselves, share the news that we've never been to this park before.
"You walking back?" he motions.
"Yes, let's walk back to the car with Mindy," I say.
Liana turns with a smile and reaches up with her small, soft hand for John's hand.
She manages to grab his two aging fingers and hang on to them for the whole walk back.
It was a hard good-bye, leaving all of those dogs and John who was standing there, flopping his hat on and off for amusement.
Jadyn and Liana tossed him a kiss and he beamed as we drove away.

How about you? Have any fun moments to share that involve your kids? Something that gets you out of your comfort zone a bit, breaks your own long standing rules? Something your glad you got out of the car for?


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3 comments:

Shelli said...

Usually I'm a shy person and I don't approach people very much. But now with a little one, I want him to meet other kid his age, so I've been approaching ladies with little boys. It's good for me!

Jena Strong said...

I love these stories, both of them.

And would love your take on this one: A mom in Aviva's preschool approached me with what she said might seem like a "silly" question Thursday afternoon... she said her daughter had brought in a special toy earlier in the week, and that Aviva had accidentally broken its head off (a plastic chicken, maybe?), and that her daughter was distraught, and could Aviva please write her a little note saying she was sorry? I couldn't help from feeling a bit scolded myself. Silly her, silly me?

xo Jena

Carey said...

Redirect, the story of our lives!