Yesterday I spent time playing Playstation with Jari. We always play soccer and he gets so excited picking the teams and seeing which players will be playing. He really lives in the game, becoming those players as his little fingers work the controls, his whole body jiving with the moves of the players. Well, if you can't play soccer outside, might as well figure out a way to do it inside.
He is pretty good at PES, mama not so much. I can't ever make my guys do what they're supposed to, and as I beat at those little knobs sometimes I just manage to make a good move ("Great action, mama!) or steal the ball away (Wow, that was good of you mama. You can steal very good!"), or even score a goal (WOW! THAT was a good goal...in the cross, mama!). Yesterday, I even managed to win a game, but only because he 'helped' me score one since he wanted to have the penalties round. He was surprised when I actually won that round, and thus the game :-)
While we were playing he was discussing how I could practice more and become a better player. And through that conversation I learned something very important. My son feels secure and quite settled in his life. Here's how it went:
Jari: Mama, tomorrow I can go back to school, right?
Mama: Yep, that'll be fun to see all your friends again.
Jari: Yeah, and when I am at school you will have time to practice PES. When you are finished with the laundry and the dishes you can play this game and get even better.
Mama: Yeah, I suppose I could. But I like it better when I can play with you.
Jari: Yeah, but if you just practice, you'll get very good and then you can even beat me!
Mama: Do you want me to beat you?
Jari: No! But if you practiced you could. Mama, are you going to go to work when I am 10 or 12 or soemthing like that?
Mama: I don't know if I will go to work when you get bigger. Why?
Jari: Well, now your job is to take care of me and Kaeden and cook and clean, but when I go to school you have extra time to practice. If you practiced this game for an hour every day til I am 12 when you go to work, you would be the BEST!
Mama: I still don't really like to play it unless I play with you. But I could practice sometimes and show you what I learned when you get home.
Jari: Why would you want to go to work when I am bigger? Don't you like staying home?
Mama: Well, I do like to be home so that I can pick you up from school, but sometimes mama would like to go do something away from home. PLus, then we would have more money.
Jari: Yeah, then we could go to Italy!
Jari: But you won't go to work til I'm 10 or 12 cuz I can't go home all by myself, right mama?
Mama: Jari, mama is always here when you need me to be here. If I go to work, we'll make sure you know where you have to be and when. But you don't need to worry about it right now, because I don't have a job now.
JAri: Yes you do! (He removes his hand from his controls for a moment to pat my arm) Your job is playing with ME!
It was just a millisecond when he glanced my way and touched my arm, interrupting his dedication to his game, bt in that touch and conversation he gave me a great peace of mind, knowing he feels security. I don't need any other job, and this conversation just bore into me the importance of the job I do have. My boys KNOW mama is here. They know that whatever else is happening in life, I will be here to care for them. They know that I will play a game, feed them, wash their clothes (even if I don't put them away ). I am grateful my husband and I chose to have me be a stay-at-home mom. Even though I miss outside adult interaction, the extra pay, and having a carreer to pursue, nothing could be worth taking that security away from my children. Playing Playstation really is worthwhile. I learned a whole lot yesterday, and it wasn't about how to push the X to make a pass...today, I'll be practicing that little maneuver! Got to surprise my little guy!!!