Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Power of a Frisbee

I have found so much joy lately in watching these little people of mine as they discover their talents.  Ethan is a physical, rough-and-tumble, athletic boy.  He is in constant motion: running, jumping, dancing, climbing.  Constantly.  If he doesn't move around enough, his energy comes out as frustration, anger or pestering those around him.  

We try our best to support his active needs.  Ethan, Ellie and I take a (2.5 to 3.5 mile) bike ride nearly every day (actually, I walk and they ride).  He's in gymnastics and swimming lessons; we hike often.  We wrestle and tickle and run around.  We have park days with friends frequently. But that right-before-dinner time has still been difficult.  He is tired (from being in nearly-constant motion all day) and hungry.  This is a time of day he needs some extra love.  

During "witching hour" one day, Jason decided to distract the boy from his troubles (and waiting for Mama to finish dinner) by tossing around a frisbee.  We were shocked to discover a latent frisbee talent in our 4 year old.  He took to the sport immediately, with very little coaching from Jason.  Other than the instruction to catch the frisbee by "chomping on it, with your hands like an alligator's mouth", very little assistance was required.

Frisbee Time has become somewhat of a tradition (one I am anxious about losing when winter arrives) around dinner-time.  Often, it is a special time just for a father and his son. But more frequently lately Ellie and I have been invited to join in.  We add a significantly clumsier feel to the game and the frisbee certainly spends more time on the ground than when it's just the guys, but they are patient with us.

Who would have thought that a simple game of frisbee could so completely trasform a difficult time of day? When dinner is ready, I call the frisbee-players inside.  In tromps my curly-haired boy: laughing, sweaty, breathing heavily, boisterous and happy.   He tells me about his "awesome catches" as we eat and my Mama-heart swells with joy.  I am overwhelmed with love for the boy and for the man--his father--who understands the importance of his patient, loving influence.

Life is good.

ps--Ethan caught the frisbee in every photo above, even the ones that don't look like he will.

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