Last week the babe and I joined another mama and kiddo for a morning play date. As we prepared to part ways, I asked my fellow mama about their plans for the rest of the day. She said they had a late afternoon commitment in the neighborhood and would find something to keep them busy until then.
It was a prototypical summer day in DC: hot, sunny, and oppressively humid. While the mama in question was imminently resourceful, I couldn't imagine keeping a toddler entertained all day without a home base. As I looked at flushed little cheeks, I longed to be the breezy carefree person who could offer a spontaneous invitation to her home. So I did...
As we set off, however, I was struck with panic. The babe's books are all over the floor! Her toys will be utterly uninteresting to a preschooler. I didn't unload the dishwasher before we left! What will I serve for lunch? I will go down as the WORST. HOSTESS. EVER.
Fortunately I had underestimated the imagination of a little boy for whom everything can be repurposed as a baseball bat. And a fellow mama who had not only seen her fair share of disorderly bookshelves, but also packed a lunch and snacks for herself and her son. We talked easily for a few hours, comparing books of interest to toddlers and adults, discussing food, and debating the merits of a car in the city. Before I knew it, they were on their way, and we had enjoyed a lovely afternoon.
Spontaneity can be scary for the planners among us, but we can all benefit by being stretched beyond our comfort zones. And we may even discover an unexpected delight! Can you find an opportunity to be spontaneous this week?