We’ve had a manic week or so here. Between J’s birthday and G’s first bushcraft camp out…
… We’ve been busy and our normal routine has been sidelined.
I know that sounds odd, given we take some crazy adventures, but when he’s not travelling J needs some structure to his week and last week it went completely out of the window. While J enjoyed his parties, it’s clear to see that the lack of routine is taking it’s toll on him.
So it was time for a little slower pace. I know, it’s often not easy to get kids to enjoy the simple things in life… but getting out and just having fun outdoors is an important thing for a child to do. It’s one of the many wonderful benefits of having a dog. The dog needs to be walked and therefore you just have to set aside time to do that. J (as usual) complained. He doesn’t like the IDEA of going for a long dog walk; He wants to do it – he knows the dog needs the exercise but leaving his IPAD and the safety of bedroom behind is uncomfortable for him right now… but I know the minute he’s out there – running as fast as he can with his best friend at his heels, he’ll be out there for hours. J and G (and the dog!) are all in this picture!
Dogs are so simplistic in their desires. They don’t wish for a better toy or a better walk than the other dogs they meet… they desire your time, your energy, your love. In reality, these are the things your child desires too. There are important lessons we can learn from a dog.
Dogs are brilliant for all kids, but especially so for children like J who have a need to feel in control – who need to make the rules rather than follow them. If the dog could talk, he would say simply ‘I want to go whichever way you want to go. I want to play whichever game you want to play. I want to play for however long you want to play’. The dog will keep every secret, and listen intently to every problem. He is, in short, the best friend a child could ever have.
And so, that’s what we did this weekend. We walked, we talked, we played with the crazy dog…. we looked for flowers and for the birds we could hear.
We played hide and seek in some trees and tried not to lose the dog!
We found a skate park and used it as a slide!!!!
It was just what we needed to do. To just be together. Not doing anything in particular and having an amazing time doing it.
It’s easy to overlook it with children… but they need (and want) your time, energy and love far more than they want any material possession.
It’s been a fab weekend of nothingness, and hopefully J’s reset button has been pressed!