Thursday, August 18, 2011

I've Been Thinking...Where Do The Children Play?

My sister and I were driving back from our F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S Girlz trip to Toronto (stay tuned to read all about our misadventures) last night and we got to talking.  Topic: Where Do The Children Play?

As I settled down for the night, I got lost in the words of a Cat Stevens Song...
Well I think it's fine, building jumbo planes.
Or taking a ride on a cosmic train.
Switch on summer from a slot machine.
Get what you want to if you want, 'cause you can get anything.

I know we've come a long way,
We're changing day to day,
But tell me, where do the children play?

I could hardly fall asleep as my mind began racing & I once again began to think...

Life moves WAY faster than it did when I was a kid.  I'm not just talking about the reality of adulthood and how time REALLY does slip away.  I am talking more about how kids today grow up way too fast...physically & mentally. 

It makes me sad.  It makes me mad.  Most of all, it makes me worry....

I worry that Ave & Bryce are gonna miss out on "being a kid" for as long as I was "just a kid".  I confess, proudly I might add, that I played with dolls until I was 10 years old!  I played with my Barbies until I was 12 year old!   Throughout High School, my girlfriends and I would hang out listening to music, going to the movies, shop at the mall and daydreaming about falling in love.  I was naive & innocent for longer than most and I feel so darn lucky and blessed to have been, especially given childhood today and the early "loss of innocence" that is occurring.  (In my opinion)

I look at playgrounds and they are deserted.  Our neighbourhood backyards are void of children's laughter and screams of joy (and pain). 


The streets are barren...there are no cans being kicked, no bike races happening & no one pulling "nets" off to the side while screaming "CAR!".

I never hear one single parent yelling at the top of their lungs, "Billy!  Billy! B-I-L-L-Y!  It's supper time!".  When the street lights come on at dusk...there are no kids running up and down the streets to get home.

WTH?  I feel like I'm in the Twilight Zone sometimes!

Do children still play?  I'm starting to think not.

I see children as young as 8 years old who NEVER play with toys....NEVER!!!!  They are glued to the TV, PS3, XBox or computer and are much more content "hanging" with adults than kids there own age.  They rarely, if ever, use their imagination to delve into a fantasy world of make-believe and almost balk at the thought of being "silly". 

I see children as young as 9 years old applying make-up, obsessing over clothing and accessories and feeling so "entitled" to their own, often absurd opinion about rules and boundaries that I want to shake their parents and say, "YOU are the adult...THEY are the child!".   Then I want to turn to the child and say, "Where the $%#@ is your Cabbage Patch Doll?"

I see children as young as 12 years old having relationships with the opposite sex and being so devastated by things their undeveloped minds and bodies just can not comprehend, all the while texting their Friends on their iphone or blackberry. 

I see children as young as 14 years old becoming parents.  Their babies themselves...enuf said! 

Where Do the Children Play?  Well from what I can see, they don't.

When I have talked with others about this dilemma I often hear,  "That's the World We Live In Now!"  Really? That just can't be true. And if it IS TRUE that's not the world I want to live in and more importantly, not the world I want my children to live in. 

And this my friends is the predicament I find myself in.  How can I, one lone SAHM change the course of "the world" and provide my children with the childhood they deserve?  I don't know. I am off to obsess over ponder my options or lack there of.

Please feel free to leave your thoughts on the plight of the "lost childhood" syndrome I am witnessing or do you think I am overreacting?

I can't be the only one wondering...Where Do The Children Play?

On a lighter note:  Bob Dylan's song  "way back when" speaks to the idea that parents of all generations have had the case of "WTH is happening?" and that makes me feel a little better...actually, it doesn't. LOL!

Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin'
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'.

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