“I’ve never seen you like that,” he said in the church parking lot. My husband, looking at me with a different light in his eye… “I’ve never seen you look so confident.”
We had just gone roller skating with the youth group. I love to roller skate, have for as long as I can remember. I even helped start a roller derby team here in Tupelo (though I didn’t get to skate on the team due to health insurance issues). This Sunday was the first time my husband, Corey, got to go skating with me. Apparently, I morphed into a different person as I flew around the rink.
I danced with some of the eighth grade girls in the center of the rink. I convinced the guy in charge to change to 90s music on the speakers and taught our youth intern to “Come on ride the train, and ride it.” When they pulled out the limbo bar, I won that bad boy.
On the way home, I thought about the Middle Places theme for this month: (RE)Play. And then I thought about Bishop James Swanson’s sermon on Saturday afternoon, at the end of Annual Conference. He said something that stuck with me and has bearing on not just this month’s theme but the theme for every month this year.
He spoke about the need for revival but he also said this:
“Re means again. You can’t revive something that was never vived in the first place.”
Of course, that made us all giggle. He even got tickled at himself. But it’s solid truth.
As I flew around that rink on eight wheels, I was indeed (RE)Playing. I was returning to something that was my favorite thing in the world as a kid. I laced up skates almost identical to the skates I’d laced up at Honor Roll parties in elementary school. I danced to songs that I danced to when I was sixteen.
So, yes, I’m sure I did look different to Corey. We entered a time machine and he caught a glimpse of my childhood. I tell my kids all the time that I’m a Time Lady, I am the Doctor’s Daughter (points to you for getting that reference), but they never believe me. I proved time travel a possibility this week.
But some of you never played in the first place. And so this month’s theme means little to you. It may even annoy you, all our talk about having fun and doing silly things and enjoying summer. Not everyone had an idyllic childhood. Honestly, I can’t claim mine was entirely idyllic, but I know it was a pretty good one in the grand scheme of things.
If you can’t (RE)Play this month, that’s okay. You can still play. It may be a little harder for you. You will have to find a form of play that you enjoy and can pull off. My suggestions:
- Go to a park and swing as high as you can. Pretend you can fly.
- Print a free coloring page from the web and borrow a box of crayons or buy a cheap box from the drug store.
- Go for a walk. In nature is best, but somewhere you can people watch will also work.
- Go to an arcade and play a few video games. Skeeball is my favorite.
- Pick a board game (some libraries have them for checkout) and get a friend to join you.
- Watch cartoons.
What are YOUR suggestions for a simple start to playing?
*originally published on Middle Places