(This post brought to you in conjunction with Fatherhood Friday over at Dad Blogs. Visit Dad Blogs to read other great fatherhood friday posts.)As I've mentioned on this blog more than once, we are a household without television. Yup, we are that family who gave it up before our son was born. Sure, it was tough in the beginning. But now? Not so much. It's just not a part of our daily lives. We get by.
Video's, however, are another story. Mrs. LIAYF and I will generally watch an episode or two of an old television series late at night, long after we put our little guy to bed. We are currently working our way through Scrubs, which by the way, is an awesome show with the perfect mix between funny and poignant.
As for Lukas, he went his first two years of life without watching any media at all. Since then we have let him watch some short episodes of different kid series', either on DVD or the ipod, generally as reward for having had a good day. Most of the time he is playing with his toys, or we are reading to him.
But, as generally is the case when you give treats in small portions, Lukas went through a period where he always wanted more of these episodes to watch and was fairly 'unhappy' when it was time to turn them off. Thankfully, once these were turned off he would quickly turn his attention to something else and get over it.
Something different took place yesterday after I'd come home from work. I was dead tired from a short night of sleep and another long day of problem solving. All I wanted to do was to relax. Lukas, on the other hand, wanted to play a game of 'baseball' with me. It was an invented game complete with rubber balls, a paper towel roll bat, and an improvised cardboard mit. We had a blast running around the house playing this game he had concocted in his imagination.
After a good half hour of constant running back and forth, I needed a break. "Do you want to watch a video buddy?" I asked. "Hmmm...only if I can hold my bat." was his reply. At that point I slipped in a Little Bear DVD we'd checked out from the library and I made my way to the kitchen to check my email. It is not often that Mrs. LIAYF or I try to push media on our son, but this was one exception. Plus, they were short episodes.
Very short episodes.
Not 10 minutes later I could hear the episode ending. It is usually at this point where he runs in and asks for "Another one?" But instead he came in, bat in hand. "Do you want another Little Bear, buddy?" Mrs. LIAYF asked him. "No, I want to play more with Daddy!" was his excited reply.
That was all I needed to hear. Suddenly I wasn't tired anymore. Realizing that my son would rather play with me than sit around and watch a cartoon was energizing and amazingly validating as a father. It was the best thing I'd heard all this week leading up to Father's Day.
And with that we played another game of house baseball, acted goofy, and once again filled the house with the sound of laughter.