Learning from Play-dates & Playground Mayhem —
It never fails, right when you think you’re onto something good–someone has to come along and throw a chink in your chain of play-date fun! And, at the end of the day, if you’re lucky, you can take a learning experience away from a bad situation on the playground.
A little while back, a few of us moms got together for what I thought was a very enjoyable play-date. That was two months ago, and already, such gatherings have already left a bad taste in my mouth (figuratively speaking, of course). But, even still, I feel I’ve gotten to know my little one better for-having suffered through a recent ‘play-date gone awry’.
For some reason, my little’n did not seem to ‘take’ to a few of the kids on the playground that day. And, for reasons I can gather as immaturity, another one of the moms thought it was okay to reprimand my daughter…when I was doing a fine job of nipping my kiddo’s bad behavior in-the-bud.
It wasn’t the first time this other mom had had the nerve to try and correct my daughter, but…on this occasion, I made sure it was the last. Never mind that her son brought a toy to the playground that he was set on not sharing. Never mind that–whether she thinks she knows it all when it comes to parenting–she will never know my daughter better than I.
So, we all parted ways. And not a moment too soon! I was fast-losing patience with her rudeness, and my fire was about to erupt like a volcano. We headed for home. I went over it all in my head, trying not to let it consume too much of my time.
I knew that my daughter’s behavior had nothing to do with the kids at the playground; though I had-yet to figure out why she had behaved like such a stinker that day. And…mind you, it was only the boys she seemed to not like. My daughter and another little girl–the daughter of a very nice and respectful home school mom who was also there–made fast-friends. And when it was time to leave, the other little girl came and hugged my little one.
So, there I was…a few days later, still stumped as-to-why my daughter seemed to play favorites. I knew there had to be a lesson to learn in all of it; if nothing else but to be more choosy about potential friends and playmates.
Then…it washed over me like a cool wave of Mother Ocean! –My daughter had been jealous, but not of the kids more than the fact that I was not there playing with her like I usually do. Instead, I was talking and spending time with the other mothers. My reason for coming to this conclusion was simple really.
The last time my daughter and I had a play-date with the ‘know it all’ super rude mom, I made the mistake of sharing my personal world with her and her child. Remembering back to that day, my daughter had started to act whiny and very pout-y. I knew from that recollection that my little one was simply not used to sharing me with anyone. It’s always just the two of us when my husband isn’t home.
When my husband is home, we all spend time together — it isn’t him doing his thing, and me doing mine. We do everything as a family. Our daughter thrives on this commitment to family. I see other moms who are always with their kids alone. This…alone, helps me to see how good I really have it that my husband is always available for us.
And even though no one could ever pay me enough to join the rude mom for another play-date, I feel fortunate for having gone through such an ordeal, and witnessing her response to my daughter. It has taught me a thing or two about respect, and being more respectful to others…simply because I respect myself. It has taught me to be more patient with my daughter, and to understand that sometimes…she just likes it to be us, having fun as a family.
*Never let toxic people infect you with their misery*
**Live the life you love…with those you love the most.**