Six Perfect Words: I Just Love to Watch You Play
“I just love to watch you play.”
I remember my delight at watching them find their hands, accidentally bat their toy and then do it again on purpose. I loved watching them smile, then giggle, then sing when they discovered their voice. I could have watched for hours as they colored and drew, built and toppled, shaped and folded, wrote and re-wrote. The look of concentration on their face as they worked out what they “meant” was priceless. It’s etched on my memory. I just loved that. Just love that.
They wouldn’t have understood then why it gave me so much pleasure to watch them play. Yes, play, it is said, is the work of children, but it’s more. It’s discovery and daring. It’s success and failure. It’s frustration and elation. Watching children engage in this is like watching the moment of Creation itself. From nothing comes something, and they’re as surprised as I am at what turns up.
It’s mesmerizing, and that’s a good thing because had I stepped in, to guide the hand, balance the block, or re-write the sentence, it would all have ended right there. Instead, I watched in complete amazement with one thought: “I love to watch you play.”
So, today as I watch my children in their life of play, I sit amazed and mesmerized. Of course, now they have surpassed me. There is no temptation to interrupt or correct, just watch and smile, and if they’ll let me, I sing their praises. They know I love what they do, but mostly I love them and especially to watch them at play because that’s where I can see best who they really are and who they’re becoming.