When a kid refuses to play

August 24, 2012 in Five Minute Friday,lessons for moms

I love Fridays and the chance to join Lisa-Jo’s community to write freely for five minutes. And then to get comments, “the love language of bloggers.” Won’t you join us? Given the word of the day, you really should. Today’s word: Join.  

My Bird was shy. Or she was pretending to be. “Go” I said. “Ask that little girl to play with you.” Bird was three, sweet and wild.  Bird was my first and I was anxious for my girl to form friendships, to fill her God-given desire to join others her age in play. 

So my little Bird, she flitted over to the other toddler. And in her toddler cadence asked her to play. And I held my breath. And that other girl, with skin like dark chocolate, a child of the Sudan refugee’s that settled in town, well she looked at my Bird with wide white eyes. She spun around and ran home to her mama on the apartment porch across the street. My Bird wobbled and collapsed, crying that she shouldn’t have asked. 

My first-child mama’s heart, it worried and fretted. What if my Bird would never ask anyone to play again? What if she didn’t recover her confidence? I didn’t recognize the resilience of the desire to join that God places in us. It takes multiple rejections and adult emotion coupled with bad logic to stop that joining drive. He made us to be joiners and He doesn’t give us more than we can handle. And my Bird, she’s made friends on every playground since then, using squirrels when other children couldn’t be found.
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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

RobinBrz August 24, 2012 at 11:09 am

Stopping by from Lisa-Jo’s.
I could completely feel that play ground moment and remembered the awkward moments my son had. He has Aspergers Syndrome (it lives on the Autism spectrum) and struggles so much with social interactions with his peers. He’s 16 now, and God has blessed him with strength and resilience, but those moments were hard for all of us.

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Jamie S. Harper August 24, 2012 at 12:47 pm

I haven’t stopped by in a while. Your blog is such a fun happy place. I love this post you’ve shared. It reminds me on my childhood. I love how you share your mama’s heart and instill courage into your girl.

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Positively Alene August 24, 2012 at 12:51 pm

This is beautiful girl. God does give us such a desire to join in – we just have to step out and take that scary step. It’s crazy watching our kids struggle through things.

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Jen Price August 24, 2012 at 2:27 pm

That’s great that your little girl didn’t let that one incident stop her from asking kids to play. I wonder why that little girl ran away.

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Denise August 24, 2012 at 2:30 pm

This touched my heart, thanks.

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Paloma August 24, 2012 at 4:12 pm

Very beautiful! It breaks our hearts to see our children be rejected… but it doesn’t break theirs even when it hurts… they are easier to forgive and to be happy! 🙂

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Rozanne Paxman August 24, 2012 at 5:11 pm

What a brave girl your little Bird was to keep trying after that first rejection. She’s a very special child.

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Laura Wells August 24, 2012 at 6:04 pm

Jen, I think she ran away because she was scared. I doubt that she knew much English yet. She probably didn’t know what to do. She wasn’t very old either.

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Nikki @ Simplystriving August 24, 2012 at 8:09 pm

Oh my mother heart…I have such a hard time crying when my boy gets rejected at the playground! but you’re so right. They still believe that joining is always the best choice. always. we have so much to learn from them. and so much to protect them from at the same time….

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redemptionsbeauty August 24, 2012 at 8:45 pm

I always hold my breathe hoping for acceptance. It’s one of the toughest parts of being a parent, because we know the pain of rejection. And then they prove how resilient they are, like your little Bird, trying again.

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Michele {A Life Surrendered} August 26, 2012 at 2:30 pm

I needed this today… dealing with a bit of rejection. It’s so hard at any age. Blessings to you on your knew journey!

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