Thursday, December 1, 2016

Pots and pans and other tech-free excitement

Ben is obsessed with my phone. Any chance he gets, he grabs for it, messes around with the buttons, holds it up to his little ear. I try not to let him have it much, although I cave when he's wriggling all over the changing table and I'm desperate. Ben is also fascinated by my computer; he loves to tap the keys.

These are the hazards of raising kids in a tech-driven world. It's different from when Max and Sabrina were his age—iPhones didn't even exist back then. My computer wasn't backlit. Ben sees me and Dave talking, texting, checking email and typing away. It is a normal part of our life, except that it shouldn't be for a baby boy.

In general, Ben is very curious about how things work. If you give him a toy, he will turn it over and poke at the holes where the screws are embedded. At music class this week, he crawled under a table and prodded the metal hinges.

In the last couple of weeks, I've been happily watching him check out the pots and pans drawers. We've babyproofed low-level ones that hold knives, plates and cleaning products, but I left the two drawers that house pots and pans accessible. I want him to have a place to explore, unfettered by "No, Ben!" I want to entice him to clash lids together, bang a wooden spoon on a pot and relish the simple, battery-free pleasures children have enjoyed for eons.

He has developed a deep affection for newspapers. Who says print is dead?
Sabrina also liked to tear up the kitchen, and we did the same: Left some spots open, locked up others. With Max, we never had to babyproof. When he started commando crawling at around 2 years old, he was all about that; it took every ounce of strength, willpower and focus that he had. It would be years before he'd attempt to climb steps. Opening cabinets and grasping objects was beyond his capabilities at the time.

Part of me is in awe of the fact that Ben is holding lids without anyone showing him how to do it. No occupational therapist has to hold her hand over his and position his fingers in place. Mostly, though, I appreciate that he is making me see the world through new eyes, as babies tend to do. I watch him gleefully rummaging through the drawers, each time as exciting as the first, and for a few minutes life feels wondrous all over again.

1 comment:

  1. Playing in the kitchen is the best kind of playing!



Thanks for sharing!

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