A post on Reflections from Kathy prompted these thoughts. Thanks, Kathy.
Our grandson is just 19 months old and boy does he keep us going! It is wonderful to have him run towards us when we arrive, holding his hand out to grab one of my fingers so he can lead me toward the front door to go outside. He loves being outside. And he clearly associates our arrival with an opportunity to get out of the house.
No matter how hard we try to keep him inside, where his energy isn’t quite so overpowering, to read books or play with his many motor vehicles, he insists on heading outdoors. And with his engaging smile, how can we resist?
My knees and hips may ache, and he doesn’t know his own strength as he holds on very tight to my finger and he swivels to change directions without warning, but I have decided he is my favorite exercise regime. He walks faster than I do, at least as he heads downhill pushing is toddler-sized cart filled with his favorite toys. So keeping up with him adds plenty of steps to my Fitbit record for the day.
He is approaching the terrible twos and seems ready to jump the gun. The other day, as we had urged him nearly home, trying to dissuade him from marching up the sidewalks to the neighbors’ porches, he began stalling, walking behind the fence that surrounds the house at the bottom of the cul de sac where his home is, watching us carefully to make sure we weren’t coming after him. When we called to him, he would come, but only as far as the driveway. He would stand on the lawn, dangling one foot in the air, as though he was about to step on the driveway to follow us, when he would swivel again and head back to the end of the lawn. Cajoling didn’t work to get him back on the path. And there is absolutely no way we would resort to a pat on his little behind to encourage good behavior – not these days.
But when he headed towards the neighbor’s back yard, we had to take matters – and him – into our own hands, picking him up and making our way swiftly back up to his home, our son’s home, our grandson’s mother’s home.
It is the most wonderful exercise program in the world.