12 July 2010

unschool monday :: connection

There's a pattern to my relationship with big owlet. A pattern to our days. Perhaps it was how we started out. Perhaps it began when her sister came along. Perhaps its her age and stage of development. Perhaps its just how we are. I've always had to work at maintaining a connection with her. As I have probably mentioned here before, she is visual sort of person and rather fond of a screen. She'd sit at a computer or watching films all day long. For days on end. Winter is a time where we tend to fall into a pattern of reverting to old comforts and for her, that involves a screen. She gets lots out of it and it doesn't always bother me, but there are times when I wish we could be doing more. Living a little. I ask her to get off for a bit, have a play, do something else... she grumbles, I grumble. Then I remember. I need to work at it. Not easy when I would rather be sitting in my pregnancy cave working on something quietly... Its always those most challenging times in parenting where you have to take a deep breath and face it front on... I grab her attention and sit down to talk with her. Usually about nothing in particular, but conversation usually turns to things that she's interested in. Questions come back. Time alone with her to do this is so important. We reconnect and suddenly there's this boost of energy and enthusiasm to make something, learn something. It doesn't matter what we do, but activities usually flow from one to the other and she explores, experiments, and we learn together. We remember the cupboard full of board games and instead of saying "no, I'm too busy", I say yes, and our afternoon continues, screen free and fun and we make plans for tomorrow...

Little owlet is another kettle of fish. She potters happily on her own for hours, stopping by for a cuddle in between things. We've had a strong physical bond from day one and there's an ease that comes with it. She knows where I am and can ask anything, any time and usually does. She likes the computer and watching movies, but would just as happily help out in the kitchen. She's busy all day and in a more physical way. Perhaps it was how we started out. Perhaps its her age and stage of development. Perhaps its just how we are. Perhaps it will change when her new sibling comes along...

If you ever hear me rambling about being in a rut, having the winter blues and no idea what to do tomorrow, something to inspire the owlets and tempt them away from technology, remind me about this post. Remind me that its all about taking time and listening. All the inspiration we need is right here, we just need to spend some time and reconnect...


  1. I had one of those too knackered moments half an hour ago. Thank goodliness I pushed through and there's now a kid sleeping peacefully, having talked a something through.

  2. Words from the wise... thanks Lauren.

  3. Your big owlet sounds a lot like my eldest daughter - similar birth story too! My youngest is far more cruisy. Is it their birth story or just their place in the family - who knows? Are you going to be able to have owlet #3 at home?

    Thanks for sharing! I often need some help getting motivated to get my daughter away from the TV or computer on days we're home together - it's good to know there are others out there having the same battle!

  4. aren't kids the same but different - my middle owlet is a square eyed kid and frustrates me with her desire NOT to connect with anything. my eldest is the opposite a pair of scissors, a piece of paper and she is busy for hours. I found I had to find No. 2's "thing" - it was cooking for a while, now it is bug collecting and I do everything to encourage her (even put up with a bucket of earth worms in the loungeroom). we do know have a bug box with a lid and a specimen box for those poor bugs that didn't make it through. No. 3 - well a typical boy - if it has wheels it can go room-room - his happy.
    Winters tough, rain doesn't help, as are the days drawwing nearer to baby day - have a lovely day Lauren


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