Park time has been an ever increasing activity in our active schedule time together. Being able to witness Lia’s social skills first hand have been something that I have enjoyed for a while. I can tell that she has come out of her shell a little more each time as she used to be an observer and not wanting to approach kids, but after several encouraging sessions and even joining in them to open the communication bridge has been successful.
Our last outing included a visit from everyone’s childhood hero, The Ice Cream Man! With his 35 dollar speaker system blasting sounds of enthusiasm from blocks away, you at first were immune to his hypnotizing whimsical riff as you carried on your way in a hyper game of chase. It wasn’t until the kids you were chasing all of a sudden became little maniac zombies in search of their parents to beg and plead for the only form of payment the ice cream man will accept. I can still see the hamster wheel turn in your head from 30 feet away and then you looking and running at me for the very same thing.
Needless to say, 10 minutes later and 40 wet napkins shorter you embarked on round 2 of your recess extreme without a care in the world, only this time tucked away deep into your limbic system in the hippocampus, you will log away the pitch and tone of the musical chants that is… The Ice Cream Man aka The Frozen Snack Pied Piper.
Shortly after that, you had made friends with a little girl and had wandered close enough to engage the both of you in conversation. Keeping things simple I started with the type of ice cream the other girl had gotten and what type of games were you playing with each other. After what seemed like a 5 minute answer I blurted out “Oh really that sounds like fun, I used to play those games when I was a little girl too” Now, with adults that situation is humorous, but with kids in a park, I just became the weird guy hanging out on the park bench. Of course I laughed and tried to explain “I meant a little boy”, but it was no use…they saw no humor and just went back to playing like nothing ever happened, but it was definitely worth writing about because I had never felt so awkward after a mindless statement rolled off my tongue. I’m sure like most kids, that little girl tucked it away until her mom put her to bed that night and she asked “mom, can little girls grow up to be men?” Only because little kids minds work like that, they take small amounts of data, tuck it away and when they find the time to assess it, they then inquire. It’s actually kind of funny to think about because I know I have answered some pretty questions from Lia that I know were from previous events that she couldn’t digest completely.
If I ever hear the words Slumber Party again, it will be too soon. Although Lia did not partake in the sleep over, she/me definitely got a taste of what’s to come. Don;t get me wrong, I think they are going to be fun, but I honestly think an airplane taking off makes less noise than the high pitched sequels these girls are able to expel. Funny thing is, nothing has to happen for them to trigger it, they were happening all the time and without warning. I had never experienced or even thought of a girls slumber party, which like most normal boys probably wouldn’t unless they has a younger sister. However my sleepovers pale in comparison, as we were actually normal, unlike these hummingbird frenzied girls running a muck. It was what I had imagined the New York Stock Exchange must be like on a busy day, paper flying, people yelling…it was contained pandemonium at the very least. These kids were a little older than Lia, but Lia found some girls her age and interacted great with them. She played freeze frame, got some face painting, and even played pin the lips on Justin Beiber. Of course she doesn’t even know who he is, and I hope it stays like that for a very long time, she had a blast.
I caught some video of a charade type game in which the participant pops a balloon and then acts out the clue inside the balloon. All of the kids had a hard time popping the balloon, but it was entertaining at the least as they all had their own way to try and pop it, and Lia sat more on the floor than the actual balloon. In the end she did end up popping it and acted out a “seal” which was in my opinion should have received a golden globe, but as her father I am a tad biased.