It’s July. Not every minute is crammed with camps or classes. The other day my five year-old draped a Duplo dinosaur with a strand of buttered linguine as if pasta were the new accessory for hard plastic fawn-colored dinosaurs. The dinosaur was “Dinee,” in case you wondered.
“You need to wash the dinosaur,” I told her.
“Dinee, you need a bath now,” she cooed in her talk-to-Dinee voice of that moment.
She headed for the kitchen sink, pulled the sprayer and washed—and washed and washed and cooed and sang and told stories and washed—Dinee.
The next day, her friend Arella came over and they spent a long time practicing handstands on the grass. They also had a couple of spats and ate popsicles before they did more handstands.
The point of these vignettes is so simple: it’s really important—at five or six or 15 or 35—to let nothing happen sometimes. We probably all need more dinosaur wash and handstand practice opportunities. Sometimes, less really is more.
Sarah Werthan Buttenwieser is a freelance writer and blogger whose work has appeared in the New York Times, Brain Child Magazine and Salon the Huffington Post, Babble and Ceramics Monthly. Her essays have appeared in various anthologies including The Maternal is Political and Wait a Minute, I Have to Take Off My Bra. A writer for Preview Massachusetts Magazine, she keeps a personal blog, Standing in the Shadows at the publication’s news site, the Valley Advocate and a tumblr Refractions. She is a sometime contributor to Momfilter. Follow her on twitter–@standshadows or Pinterest.