Rainy spring day. Energetic toddler. Need to get out of the house. What to do? Indoor playground at the mall.
It sits at the edge of the food court. (Convenient.) Dozens of parked strollers forecast the activity inside. The brown bear by the entrance has his arm up to measure “Only this tall. No bigger.”
We find a space on the bench lining the wall. Sofia knows what to do. Shoes come off; away she goes. Parents, grandparents, nannies line the wall. I watch Sofia, but not like a hawk. She can’t get out without passing me. I lean back, content to take this break.
The play area is full of life. Climbing, running, jumping. Wrestling. That would be the boys. Non-stop motion. Laughter and fun in the air. Sounds of joy.
Sofia comes back to me. Big smile. “Hi, Nani”. A quick hug and she is off again.
As I sit, I notice. These little ones are like homing pigeons. They come back to home base. Over and over I see it. Passionate, fully focused play, and then a trip to the sidelines. Checking in for a happy hug or a comforting cuddle, they find their way to the one they know.
Amazing. So many big people line the wall. How do they know just where to go?
I think again. Perhaps not so amazing. On this playground kids are in motion; big people stay put. The safe spot never changes. Never, ever.
Life tumbles by. Good times. Rough patches. Have you found your safe spot?