During the middle of another school year, struggling to meet the next novel's deadline, feeling overwhelmed, under-appreciated, and like this whole play project has been a bust, our family made a decision which has reminded me -- on a daily basis for the last five weeks -- that some creatures simply cannot live without play.
Phoebe is fourteen weeks old now. Her day is still much like a very young child's: She gets up early, pees and poops (sometimes on the floor), puts bad things in her mouth, eats and eats and sleeps and sleeps. She cries sometimes too. But mostly she plays. And I'm not talking about a refined game of chess, here. She runs until she slams into the wall (and then keeps running), she leaps in the rain (eating the raindrops from the eaves), she chases anything that moves (kids and cats are both fair game), and she likes anything that squeaks (again, toys, kids, or cats -- she does not discriminate).
And so, now when I'm feeling buried alive under my own work, the girls' homework, all of our obligations, I've been trying to look at Phoebe and remember that play is not optional. It is necessary to our well-being.