My world is largely full of adults. I work with adults, I live with adults, I mostly converse with adults. And so every now and again, when I spend some time with my (wonderful, fabulous, very 'little people') nieces and nephews, it takes me a bit by surprise just how differently they go through life.
For example last week I was hanging out with Maggie (3 years old) and Ana (almost 2 years old), and we were playing hide and seek. This is how it goes: Maggie and I would cover Ana with a blanket, on her bed in their room. Then we would run out into the lounge room, sit on the couch, cover our eyes and count to ten. Once that ritual was accomplished, we would sprint back into the room, pull the blanket off Ana (the same one we had just put on her), and 'find her'. Then Maggie would be hidden under the same blanket, and Ana and I would run out into the lounge room, sit on the couch, cover our eyes and count to ten before running back into the the room and finding her.
We would then repeat this about 12 times.
Then the game would get a little exciting, because Maggie would decide to hide Ana under the table instead of under the blanket. This would be followed by Maggie hiding under the table on the next round, and then we'd repeat that cycle about 12 times. And then another exciting change would eventually happen, and we'd hide Ana in the clothes cupboard instead of under the table (just to really challenge ourselves), and we'd repeat that 12 (or 1200) times.
I admit to getting a little bored with the game (like, really bored). I kept trying to introduce new hiding spaces, or a little sense of 'surprise' into the game ('Maggie, why don't you hide somewhere else, by yourself, and Ana and I will try and figure out where you are?!') - but they weren't the slightest bit interested.
It made me laugh, and I've been thinking about it a little since then. It's definitely a pattern with little people, this 'repetition' thing. But repetition is a crucial component for getting better at something, right? And it's so exciting to be part of all that learning and growing. I certainly used repetition when I was learning to play the piano, or memorising for exams, or learning all the things I know how to do for my job at work. And I'm grateful for all those people who put aside their 'being bored' moments to patiently help me repeat something they already knew how to do, until I finally had it down.
And it was seriously impressive just how clearly and quickly Ana could count to ten (with her little hands pressed over her eyes), before we went to find Maggie.
So though the game itself was just a tad boring, it was fun as always to hang out with these great little girls and their little worlds of practice and learning.
PS. Abs, if - when they're teenagers - you ever having trouble finding one of them, just give me a call. Pretty sure I've got all their 'hiding places' covered :)