A parent’s view of summer vacation


I spent most of my childhood bored. I’m sure my mom would love to confirm that I complained of boredom a lot, but I’m not complaining today.

Looking back, I’m grateful for my youth spent in wide open play and exploration, and I sometimes feel like a defender of boredom in a world where kids seem too busy with classes and camps to just play. Or at least, I did feel that way.

Preschool is over. Kindergarten is months away. As much as I loved coming home from work last week to my five year old’s exuberant claim that she “read books ALL day long!!!” (There were at least three exclamation points. Possibly more.) I am also nervous for next week when the novelty wears off–when the “I’m bored” sets in.

I’ve heard tell of a magical place in the middle of the “free range” and “planned” parenting styles. I’ve even found a guide in this article by Asha Dornfest, author of Minimalist Parenting. I especially like #9: “Challenge the fear of boredom. Your kids’ boredom is irritating, not life-threatening. Don’t be afraid of it.”

Happy summer vacation, everyone. Here’s to facing our fears. 🙂

Photo: I’m Bored by Michael Ian Black