Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Just Out Back



I feel like the children are about fifty times as content and happy when they're outside and about a hundred times less needy. I sort of think I'm blowing it out of proportion but then I think about what the fresh air and sunshine does for me.

In the very short list of reasons why we are back here, I didn't realize how prominent this one would be. It doesn't rank up there with being ten minutes from the grandparents' house but it does fall just below it. And as I said, it appears on a very short list in my mind.

It seems weird that a backyard (and a small, simple, relatively uninteresting one at that) wields so much power. At least it does to me.

But I think through it more carefully and it does make some sense. While we loved our daily park trips in Brooklyn, they clearly weren't as convenient. For one thing, you had to walk there and walk back. But beyond that, at my children's age, they were so much more limiting.

Here I don't have to pack up a lunch if we want to eat outside. We use the same plates we use at the kitchen table and actually the clean up is easier if anything. I can easily bring school books outside and plan for an hour while they play without breaking my back carrying them several city blocks. They're actually at the age where they can play independently out there for little stretches while I run in and do chores or fix supper. At the park, I was hesitant to even bring a book because it was often crowded and I didn't want to take my eyes off of them for more than a few seconds. There are probably a dozen other reasons involving potties and such as well.

Also, it's reminiscent of my own childhood and the memories I made with my sister and the adventures we had. That kind of thing holds a lot of weight with me.

The more tired I get the more grateful I am, in some ways. I miss New York almost every day and really I think all four of us do. But there is so, so much good here and I certainly have eyes to see it.

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