In central and eastern North Carolina, cities and towns shut down when forecasters call for inclement weather. Today we had 1/8″ of sleet. The grocery stores are barren; bread, milk, and egg shelves ravaged. A school bus wrecked. For those who hail from up North – our weather adversity is comical.
I avoided it all. Brantley was under the weather. So, we both stayed home. Today’s Agenda – not much. We did a lot of typical things; watch Disney, eat, nap, play with trains, talk about trains, watch train videos, etc. One thing – however – was pretty cool.
Brantley and I made a ‘train tunnel’ out of sheets. We drove the train (a butterfly barrette), through the deep, dark, cavernous tunnel that was a B-line to the North Pole. Brantley, unbeknownst to me, has Santa on speed dial. Once we arrived at the North Pole (aka, daddy’s foot at the end of the bed under the sheets) we parked the train. Brantley took out his cellphone and called up the big man. “Hey, Santa. Come here.” Not very polite, I know. However, it was his fantasy…so, I let it go.
Brantley informed me we were getting gifts. After a few moments Santa arrived (Brantley’s right hand) bearing gifts (imaginary). When we opened the boxes we found big, white snowballs. We threw the snowballs; we ate the snowballs. They were delicious.
The cycle continued for well over 30 minutes. Call Santa, gifts delivered (always snowballs), eat snowballs. Pretty soon Mr. Bunny & Mr. Turtle boarded the train – ticket in hand. The tickets were punched a la “Polar Express” & they were welcomed aboard and encouraged to join the North Pole adventure.
It was fun. It was fun to hide under sheets. It was fun to eat imaginary snow. It was fun to host a snow eating party with two stuffed animals.
Our North Pole adventure made me think of my friend. Her parents discouraged make-believe, dissuaded strengthening the imagination. Her story makes my heart hurt. My parents always encouraged make-believe play and still believe in fine-tuning the imagination. Everyone should use their imagination, adults included.
What if I told Brantley that a butterfly barrette was not a train, or a snowball would melt in a giftbox – therefore, we could not eat them? He is young, but he knows we didn’t really eat snow. He believes in Santa, but he knows Santa was not in our train tunnel today.
We should all jump on the imaginary boat of make-believe and set sail, never looking back. It’s not to late to get a ticket.