I enjoy an occasional game of pinball. One time, I was playing a pinball game where, if you hit a certain part of the game with a pinball, you received an extra ball, and suddenly you were playing with two balls at the same time. Then if one of those balls hit that same spot, you were playing with three balls.
One time I was playing that pinball game, when the balls kept hitting that same spot. Soon the game had more balls than I could handle. And they wouldn’t quit. I had somewhere to go, so I tried to lose, but the pinballs kept coming. Finally I had to walk away with pinballs still bouncing around the game every direction.
I still play that same game. But in our house it’s not pinball, it’s called bedtime. It’s a game where I keep my eye on one child while the other children bounce around the house uncontrolled, and as soon as I get one child in bed and move on to the next, the one that is in bed is somehow out bouncing around again. Sometimes I just have to walk away.
However, all that physical movement that our children perform does have some benefits. For example, our four-year-old son, who does not exercise other than constantly moving, looks like a body builder. If you want to lose weight and build muscle, just try the four-year-olds solution of never, ever standing still. If for some reason you must wait in one place, all you have to do is contort your legs as you flail this way and that and bump into all the people around you. They won’t mind, or if they do, you can ignore them.
It will make it kind of hard to put on your pants, though. What should be a job done in one minute can take dozens if you don’t stop moving your legs long enough to put them through pant legs. And mad flailing could mean your pants might come off easily. Our son spends a lot of time running around the house in just his underwear. I guess his being a body builder might be inevitable.
Then suddenly, when we mention that it’s time to go somewhere, especially somewhere boring, all movement stops. Our son is piled up with a blanket on a chair, and has turned into molasses, but only slightly less sticky.
He insists that he is just too tired to do anything, even though moments before he was winding this way and that. On the other hand, I can see why he is tired. It’s a lot of work being a four-year-old.
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