(Photo by Peter McIntosh)
This weekend, for those who have been following, was moving-in weekend. The truck came at 9 am on Saturday, so I was up and at 'em bright and early Saturday morning. Kathy single-handedly did the soccer thing (last weekend of it, yay!) while I went to the apartment and met the movers. That night, some friends from work had a dinner party, and when we got home after 2, our bed was covered in unfolded laundry instead of sheets. So we were folding laundry and making the bed at 3 am. Kids don't sleep in, although ours very nicely played games and put a puzzle together Sunday morning before waking us up, so we didn't have to get up until nearly 9.
All of this -- moving, plus party, plus laundry, plus waking up -- means that I was tired, cranky, and headache-y on Sunday. Sometimes I think I am significantly older than Kathy, because at one point, I said, "You know, going out isn't really worth it if you feel like this the whole next day. Maybe we should not have the babysitter spend the night, so that we will have to get home at a reasonable hour." Yeah, I'm not even 30 yet. Adult moods wear off on small things, so all the kids were a little bit testy as well. It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't all that pleasant either.
After lunch, the kids wanted to go for a bike ride. I could not thing of anything worse, but one of them told me it wouldn't be fun if I didn't come. So I came.
We zoomed down a hill and learned to change gears. Kathy was the leader, and she brought us to the playground. We went on the swings. At one point, all five of us were laughing with pure joy, zooming through the sky. I forgot how if you go high, your stomach drops out at the top. It was fantastic. We were the only ones at the playground, so after the swings, we played hide-and-seek. One of the kids sort of hid behind a rock, completely in plain view in a hot pink jacket, and could not be found. Then we played freeze tag. I showed them how, in order to get un-frozen, someone needs to crawl through the frozen person's legs. No one wanted to go home, but we decided to leave while energy was still high since we had to bike-ride home. I realized as I was getting on my bike that I had a grass-stained knee and my headache was completely gone. So was my crabby mood.
One of the best things about having kids in your life is that you have permission to play again. No amount of napping and TV watching would have improved my mood. I needed to PLAY. I hadn't been on the swings in ages, and I forgot how much fun it is. Adults don't really play, do we? We allow ourselves video games, and sometimes organized sports. But not real playing. With laughing and running. Maybe we're a little lazy, or too competitive. I don't know. But really, there is nothing like it.
So. If you are tired, or hungover, or grumpy, I highly suggest you go play something outside. Preferably with a kid. If you don't have your own, or don't want your own, there are lots of organizations that will let you borrow one, and then everyone wins.