The grandkids just had a sleepover here.
Whew! I’m exhausted from playing so hard. They squeeze play into every minute of the day all the way to bedtime. There’s always one more jump on the bed. One more time to burrow under the covers. One last tickle. One more silly song.
In just one afternoon, we played hockey in the basement with padded sticks and pucks. We played ring toss in the driveway. We raced in the Belmont Stakes on the swings. We read book after book. We climbed up and down the fort ladder and climbing wall. We played board games. We ate mini M&Ms on the porch swing and savored every bite. We drove tiny garbage trucks around a pretend landfill. We played pirates, complete with a homemade eye patch and treasure map. We blasted Irish music and sang along, “No, nay, never no more, will I play the wild rover, no never, no more.”
After they left, I crashed.
How fun to be exhausted from joy instead of work.
Adults forget to play. We wait until the weekend, and then we squeeze in a movie after yard chores, grocery shopping, house work and other errands.
Even when we play, we turn our golf game or running or biking into one more to-do to cross off our list or we turn what used to be fun into some grand achievement with goals to set and conquer only to set new ones out of reach.
The other day, I saw some random guy walking down the street playing the banjo. I laughed out loud. Moments like that leave a smile on your heart long after the music fades.
I still can see my old neighbors on Grant Street in Kent with the garage door open and a cloud of cigar smoke hanging over four guys sitting around a card table playing poker.
That wasn’t smoke. It was a halo, blessing them for taking time for joy.