Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Playmates or Soulmates

Cooper and Kevin.

My friend, Sarah, is parenting three kids alone for a few months while her husband works overseas. She's holding up beautifully, but has mentioned a couple of times that her middle son, Kevin, is wearing her out. She describes him as happy and smiley most of the time, but prone to bursts of energy and tantrums. Hmmm... sounds familiar! To give Sarah a little break, I invited Kevin over for a play date.

If Cooper could be cloned or reincarnated, I think he'd resurface as Kevin. The two bear striking resemblances to each other; both are energetic, imaginative, silly, fun-loving adventure seekers. One Cooper is quite a handful. Put Cooper with Kevin and you have a scene straight out of a Ritalin commercial.

They greeted each other in a bear hug that quickly morphed into a wrestling match. Both boys emerged from the floor grinning and took enough of a breather to take chase. They circled the house and then raced out of the house. The boys fought with sticks and threw rocks. They raced up to the top of the play set, snow sled in hand, and then whizzed down the slide. I watched how well the boys complimented each other, each boy exhibiting limitless energy coupled with equally vivid imaginations. What one boy thought of the other boy added to it. No idea seemed bad or out of reach as long as it involved danger and loads of energy.

I watched the scene with a mixture of amusement and horror, clutching a phone and expecting to dial EMS at any moment. But with each shenanigan, they'd emerge even happier than the time before.

I pondered whether Cooper and Kevin are a good combination. Surely a more sedate playmate might be easier, but Cooper's found a soulmate of sorts. How wonderful it is for Cooper to find someone who gets him and loves him all the more.

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