I love watching my children pretend, flexing their imaginations, creating colorful worlds of adventure that always end with lessons of happiness and love.
Today was no different and while driving home from school, Ava and Mia took their blankets, put them over their heads, and became ghosts. Ghosts of the car seats.
Once home, they carefully climbed out of the car, not once breaking character. Peeking out from under their blankets as they tumbled towards the front gate. Little girl ghouls, “oohing” and “ahhhing” all the way to the front door. Door unlocked, then two tiny ghosts quickly push through and fall to the floor. Giggles erupt as they abandon the blankets for the pile of toys in the middle of the living room.
Without missing a beat, the Ariel doll is out flying on glitter covered dragon; looking for a great adventure. The Flynn Rider doll rides a purple dinosaur across the countryside. A plastic dolphin wears a princess dress, lives in the pink doll house and sleeps in a bed on the second floor. The fuzzy purple goat can be found in the attic with the dozens of Squinkies surrounding him. A giant pink and white unicorn is dressed in necklaces, pink socks, and a tiny pair of plastic purple earrings. Tea and cakes are served from the play kitchen with sandwiches made of wooden vegetables, bread, and bologna. Cakes are baked and frosted with felt tip pens. Milk and juice are served from a delicate plastic tea set.
Rainbows of color crayons and watercolors. Page after page of imagination created out of vibrant scribbles and wiggly brush strokes.
They dig through the costume jewelry box. Big plastic beads from the sixties, shell necklaces from the tropics, classic strings of pearls, and piles of shiny bangles. Both girls try on sets of great grandma’s sparkly clip on earrings. Ladies who lunch style on 2-year old ears.
I stop and wonder. Life is busy when you are big. Freedom of the mind bound tightly by adult responsibilities and worries.
But then, you have a child. Or play with your niece or nephew. Or babysit the neighbor down the street. Each experience offering up a glimpse into the memory of what was your childhood imagination. Reclaiming it, even if it’s just for a little while.
We are reminded that we all have a gift for telling a tall tale or magical story, or for creating the perfect castle made of blankets from the linen closet and fluffy couch pillows, or for preparing a five-star meal of plastic food with tea service.
As for today, I was a ghost, a horse, a rainbow, and a good night story-teller.
And as I close my eyes to go to sleep, I smile and wonder what tomorrow will bring.