Firdaus Tarmizi

Archive for September, 2011|Monthly archive page

The World is His Playground

In Family, Parenthood on September 10, 2011 at 11:24 pm

1.  One of the first things I realized about Hamzah and his toys is this:  he has short patience with them. He’ll play with them for maybe a day or two but will get bored, and explore other, more mundane things around him.

2.  He’ll be more entranced with empty boxes, the fridge, an empty water bottle or with keys and sheets of papers lying around (yes, our house is a mess).  We’ll shake his rattles at him, and squeeze his squeaky toys to get his attention, only to have him grin quizzically, and then turn to his new-found love:  this time maybe my neatly rolled boxers (FYI, I do not fold: I roll my laundries),  the sliding door, or the contents of his mom’s handbag.

Doing his "discovering" the way he knows best


3.  He’ll once in a while “rediscover” his abandoned toys, flirts with them for a few minutes, and re-abandon them.  This makes it tricky for me to distract him, since I am never sure which toys will successfully draw his attention.

4.  More annoyingly, he’ll be adamant to play with anything that I, likewise, adamantly refuse to let him play.  Thus, the never-ending struggle to drag him back from chewing on his mom’s Crocs shoes, and also the constant tug-of-war using the TV cables.

5.  In a way,  this might also prove to be fortunate, because I need not worry too much about what toys I should buy.  Perhaps, I don’t even have to buy him toys, and just let him explore whatever he fancies, as long as they are safe.

Hamzah discovering the joy of climbing UP the slide


6.  One thing for sure:  I am thinking of not getting any of my children these modern gadgets I keep seeing children these days are running around with.  I am going to experiment whether it is possible to raise kids without too much intervention of gadgets, in these age of PSP, smart phones and iPods.  Instead, I am going to let them run around the neighborhood, play in the fields, climb trees, explore the drains and chase after dogs.  I will show them the joy of reading real books, bring them to public libraries, and drag them along with me to jungle-trekking, fishing and camping trips.  They can get their own iPhones and notebooks when they are ready, but as long as I have the time and energy, I will try to get them explore the world around them.

Can I go out now? I'll be careful, I promise!


7.  I hope #6 is not just a wishful thinking, and I know it’s going to be hard on Hamzah when he sees all the kids around him burying their faces in their cool and shiny gadgets.  But hopefully, he can appreciate how the world is bigger and more magnificent than what can be shown and contained within a screen, and the world can, literally, be his playground.