Tuesday, 27 May 2014

The Adventures of Geek Dad - Younglings are people too!

Greetings friends!

I hope you all had a good bank holiday weekend?

Today I'd like to talk to you about my recent experiences with my youngling.

So as has always been the case since the Moo was born; Saturday evening has always been the time that my wife goes for as long a bath as she likes and I watch over the youngling.

It is during this time I try to play games with the Moo, or introduce her to new tv or film and for the past couple of months we have used this time to share a weekly film together.

Now the Moo loves these films, I don't know if she really gets what is going on in terms of characters, plots and twists but she is transfixed by her weekly film and she seems to really enjoy them, which is good enough for me!

But you see, the more I think about it, the more I realise that at some point she stopped being a small-thing that simply demands Peppa Pig and instead became a little person.

I suppose one of the big eye openers for me was the other week; I had gone to get her out of her bedroom and give her breakfast when I found her up and out of bed and playing with her baby doll in it's buggy. She had taken some plastic sheeting from a sheet of stickers, has opened it up and placed it over the dolls head: looking a little suffocating if I'm honest.

When I asked about this sheet of plastic she said that it was baby's rain cover and would keep her dry when it rained.

It was then I realised that she was semi-imitating the clear plastic cover that our buggy we take her out in has.

That morning she was pushing the her baby buggy around the lounge and ftw little bit of plastic was getting bashed and crumpled and it wasn't long before Mummy got involved and insisted that it was thrown away as it was rubbish.

This made the Moo distraught, as in seriously upset!

Now in the past we have needed to remove toys from her, but they had never caused a reaction like this; you could almost see her little heart breaking.

It was then I realised why this was.

We were not just talking about a sheet of plastic rubbish, this was more than that.

So I followed her into the kitchen where she was clutching the plastic sheet and crying for all her might, I knelt down beside her and spoke. I asked why she was upset and her response was not the most articulate I had ever heard; something along the lines of "Mine!"

I knew what it was. This wasn't just a piece of plastic we were talking about, this is a sheet of plastic that she had opened, torn slightly and repurposed for another function. This was one of her first true expressions of creativity and I was telling her that we had to throw it away.

I asked her calmly if this was the reason; if she wanted it because she had made it.

The Moo looked at me and nodded. Not the nod she does when she is trying to get her way, or the nod that she does when she doesn't understand what you're saying, but a nod of understanding and agreement.

I had to think quickly. I needed to dispose of the plastic but I couldn't destroy her creativity for I have many fond memories of the many things I tried to build with fruit punnets and toilet rolls. Most of the time these constructions looked like nothing to anyone other than some rubbish tied to more rubbish, but for me they were special as I had made them.

I thought to myself, what's better than something I had made myself? The answer was clear!

So I ran to my den, found exactly what I needed, a large clear flat plastic sheeting and brought it down.

I held it out of reach of the Moo as it was currently too much of a suffocation hazard to give over, but I explained that if she threw her old one away, then Daddy would sit with her and they would make another one together; a new, properly fitting, better one!

So we did! It didn't take long, and in no time at all we had a nicely fitting rain protector to sit over her buggy and protect it from rain, but the best part was that we both had made it!

To others this probably sounds like a really obvious story, but for me it was a real eye opener as I remembered the many times I would get truly upset to have someone damage something I had created, be it a sheet plastic rain coat like what the Moo had made, or one of the much more expensive models I buy, assemble, convert, base and paint nowerdays.

Sure one is a lot more complicated than the other and requires a great deal more skill, but it's still an exercise of creativity and having that attacked still hurts like their hitting you directly.

All I can say now is that I look forward to the future, as she develops a repertoire of films that she enjoys and others she doesn't, as she explores her creative side with paper and pencil along with sculpture and continues to enjoy games that require thought, co-ordination and not just 'look at the pretty colours'.


That's all from me today. It might be a little of a meander and in all honesty I'm not sure if I actually reached the conclusion I was going for, but oh well.

Until next time; stay safe and I'll see you Cryptside!

- Your friendly neighbourhood Doctor Loxley

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