Stayed home this morning for an extra hour or so, to wait for a repairman, and kept my son at home–mostly because I didn’t want to run out and back before 9 a.m., but also because I spent so little time with him in the past week, it seemed like a way to get in some daddy-and-baby time. And it was, in fact, hectic fun. Something interesting happened, though, which I haven’t really experienced before. As I got dressed, he sat and played with a few of his blocks and other toys, quietly, in a corner of the bedroom, for something like ten solid minutes. I didn’t have to do anything, other than talk to him when he made conversation.
This is, as I say, new. (My wife noticed it for the first time a couple of days ago, while they were out of town together.) Play, in the past, has always been squirmy, and has always required a parent to constantly be there, and be involved: keeping him from frustrated and teary, or just plain getting himself killed on some hazardous household implement. Since we’re a no-TV household (until he’s asleep, that is; after that, we start mainlining), I’ve literally never seen him sit and amuse himself till now. Suddenly we can…well, not ignore him, exactly, but actually get something done. Clean, cook, answer an e-mail or two, whatever.
Is this the flickery beginning of a (small) return to civilized adult life for me? Or am I fooling myself? Remember, he’s 19 months old; parents of 2-year-olds, please enlighten me, down in the comments.