Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Boredom (aren't you hooked?)

Confession: Although I have been a mother for over nine years now, I still find a certain level of anxiety stealing in when I see my children doing this kind of thing in the middle of the day:

This terrible urge to intervene, to hover, to give them something Productive to do, something Educational to fill their time, rears its ugly head, even when the three R's are checked off and they've indicated no dissatisfaction with their apparently idle state. It's like a disease, this boredom-phobia that threatens my more sensible instincts.

But since I HAVE been a mother for over nine years, I am learning to master this impulse. To remember that one of the greatest gifts of a true childhood is that of TIME. Time to quite literally watch the clouds go by. Time to cultivate "the inward eye/which is the gift of solitude." (Name that poet!) Time to connect with their Creator.

Two minutes after I snapped that photo, the boy grew quite excited over the shape of a cloud: "It's like a frowning man wearing a sombrero!" We tag-teamed the cloud identification thing for a while, sharing a few belly laughs, and ended up drawing our finds in sidewalk chalk on the driveway (since the girls were already drawing ships and knights). Not because it was productive or educational, but because we both wanted to, and it was fun, and childhood is fleeting.


Tim said...

May I just point out two things?
1st, the nicely trimmed lawn edge on which Ian sits - we worked on that together and are quite proud.
2nd, I won't spoil the name-the-poet quiz, but I think the line is "That inward eye/which is the bliss of solitude"
bliss - gift, same thing, right?

Tamara said...

I really like that poem, thanks for mentioning it! But, I won't give the poet's name because I had to look it up :)

There's a great poem by Shelley about a cloud. Maybe you all would enjoy it. It has a wonderful cadence to it:

Anonymous said...

Beautiful memories. This is just what childhood is all about. Now I must find out more about this poem of which you write.

*time passes as I google, then return to the comment box*

What a lovely poem! Such peaceful and cheerful imagery. I didn't know this poem before. You're not only home schooling, you're blog schooling as well. :) Can I spill the beans now? No, I guess I should leave that for someone who knows without the aid of google.
@ Tamara: I enjoyed The Cloud by Shelley. Thanks for sharing also

Stephanie said...

Don't know the poet.

Loved the last sentence.

nicole said...

such a beautiful post!

Vanessa said...

I am SO glad you did not interrupt Ian's "boredom." I use to do the very same thing as a kid--it was my down time. . .who knew kids need down time to stare at clouds and turn them into stories/animals. LOVE the pic of Ian.

Good job on the lawn Tim!

Tim said...

Last night we went on a date. After a picnic dinner, we sat on our backs on a grassy lawn for almost an hour and watched the clouds roll past as the sun went down.