When I was child I loved to play outside in the rain. I would get so excited, scrambling into my boots and raincoat, grabbing my umbrella and dashing out the door in a mad tumble to enjoy the weather. There was no eavestroughing along the edge of the garage and my sister and I loved to walk under the waterfall that cascaded off the roof along that side, sometimes using our umbrellas to part the curtain of water, but sometimes just standing there with our hoods up and enjoying the pressure of the flowing water through the vinyl of our coats. We loved to dance in the rain.
Rainy days were fun because they brought out worms and frogs to play with, and you could float leaves and twigs in the “oceans” made by the growing puddles (not mention the fun of jumping and splashing in those puddles!) We made soup with buckets of rain water, mud, handfuls of grass and clover and pieces of gravel. We picked dandelions, carefully peeling the stems into thin strings and then watching as they curled into ringlets when we dropped them into the water. The clouds were a thousand shades of pearly gray, whipped into a frenzy of pulsating shapes by the winds of the low front moving through. The water cleaned the streets and the front steps and made the cars along the street look all shiny and new again. And the rain had a smell to it; a freshening, promising scent of new beginnings.
Oh, how I loved the rain.
And then I was a teenager, and getting rained on was just annoying and uncomfortable; wet jeans took forever to dry, and wet shoes were even worse (because, of course, rain boots were a fashion faux-pas, used only by little kids and soccer moms). And rain plastered your hair and made you look ridiculous. Not to mention the squashed worms all over the road… ick! I started to hate the rain
And then I was a grown up, living in an apartment, with an office job, a commute, and shoes I didn’t want ruined by the water (but I still didn’t wear rain boots). And the inconvenience of having to carry an umbrella or worse, a raincoat, was an almost personal affront; I had no patience for rain.
And then I was a Mommy, with a little boy who wanted to go outside and play. I sighed and opened my mouth to object and point out that it was raining; then I thought it might actually buy me a few minutes of peace and quiet to actually get some work done. So I packed him into his raincoat and boots and sent him out into the backyard, by himself; I had no time for playing in the rain.
That day, I glanced out the window at one point and watched my son wander around aimlessly, thinking briefly that he didn’t seem to know how to play in the rain. And I was puzzled. But he was outside and out of trouble so I left him there, in the rain, because I had things to do.
But I wonder what would have happened if I had just taken the time to put on my rain boots (I got tired of wet feet and ruined shoes a while back, and actually do have a pair now) and rain coat and gone out to play with him. He would have probably been thrilled that Mommy was actually spending time with him rather than telling him off for leaving his toys strewn across the kitchen floor again.
Maybe I could have shown him how to play in the rain, the way my sister and I used to do when we were children. Maybe he would have liked making dandelion curls and floating bits of bark in the puddles with me. Maybe we could have searched for frogs and worms together, and marvelled at all the colours in the fast-moving clouds. And maybe, hand-in-hand, we could have learned to dance in the rain together as the storm passed overhead.
Dream. Believe. Achieve.
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It’s amazing how we evolve as people. We forget that the small things are sometimes the biggest things that make us happy.
I hated rain when I got older, but now that I have my son I don’t mind it so much. But it can’t be the cold ass rain that we are getting now. Mother Nature did not get the memo that it is spring.
Can’t remember a spring like this… my backyard finally lost most of the snow, and now it’s covered again. And apparently they’re getting more snow out west right now, which means we may be in for yet another blast. 🙁 Oh well… I suppose it has to arrive at some point, right? We’ll just have to keep on going until it does. By which time it will probably be summer and spring will have bypassed us altogether. In which case, I’m voting for pina coladas and a lounge chair in the backyard while the kids get to splash in the kiddie pool. Wanna come? 😉 LOL! Hang in there… we’ll make it.
Aw Nathalie, please tell me that you did dance in the rain with him another time? It’s a heart wrenching tale.
I know how you feel though. With me it’s just being pushed for time. I get fed up when I realise I’m constantly telling my kids to wait or saying ‘not now’ I’ve got other things that need doing before I can have fun. Today and yesterday we made the most of some rare sunshine and planted veg in the garden and got covered in mud! It was great!
Sometimes as adults we do forget to focus on the here and now so we just need prompting. Thanks for the reminder! 🙂
Hi Molly, and thanks so much for commenting! 🙂 Now that the dandelions are growing again, it’ll be fun to show the kids how to make them curl in the water. It is hard when you have things that you really do have to get done… the little ones don’t understand that. I’m up late a lot these days trying to cram everything into the hours after the go to bed at night.
I’m glad you got your veggie garden planted! It’s still too early in the season for that here (usually it’s the end of May, beginning of June before you can be sure the frost is over up here). Soon enough… the cherry trees are blossoming, so I know planting season is on its way! 🙂