Let’s Not Forget to Play
by Sally E. Smith
We live in serious times, and most of us have more than our share of worries. Yet thinking about the end of summer and the beginning of fall, fills me with memories of carefree childhood summers, spending days watching the heat shimmer off the pavement, feeling the refreshing coolness of a neighbor’s pool, and playing outside until the sun began to dip below the horizon and my mom called me in for the night.
As plus-size women, we face what sometimes feel like insurmountable obstacles. When we’ve been subject to discrimination, societal bias, or family schisms due to our size, we feel anything but carefree. And, when combined with today’s difficult times, it can be easy to neglect our need to play.
Embracing Our Playful Nature
Nevertheless, embracing our playful nature is essential to lightening
our burden, cleaning out our mental cobwebs, and replenishing our spirit. When we make the time to play, we tap into our childlike wonder, our sense of adventure, and even our silliness. Our hearts fill with gladness and our souls fill with hope.
Here are five fun and inexpensive ways to embrace our playful nature, and recapture a hint of childhood’s seemingly endless summer days.
Organize a Classic Game Night
Celebrate friendship and frolic with a girls’ night in. Make it a potluck and pull out
your favorite board games from childhood. A rousing game of Monopoly, Clue, or Scrabble is tremendous fun. For a fun variation, hold a checkers, chess, backgammon tournament, complete with prizes or homemade certificates for the champions.
Start a Bunco Group
If you’ve never played Bunco, you’re missing out on a whole lot of silly
fun. Bunco is a dice game that takes absolutely no skill whatsoever, but provides the perfect pretext for getting together with friends on a monthly basis. All you need is 12 people, 9 dice, and some score sheets you can create yourself. I’ve belonged to the same Bunco Group for almost 10 years, and spend the third Friday evening of every month laughing and yelling and having the time of my life.
Make a Splash
While the thought of going swimming is abhorrent to many plus-size women,
if you can find a pool that feels emotionally safe, dive right in. MiB has fabulous swimsuits, and there are few experiences more refreshing than a cool pool on a hot summer’s day. Don’t forget to bring pool toys. Our natural buoyancy is a perfect match for pool volleyball and water polo!
Let your creative juices flow with an art or craft project. Whether you
choose to scribble with crayons, knit mittens for needy kids, design an elaborate scrapbook, or learn how to make ceramics, there’s no time like the present. Give wing to your whimsy and rediscover your inner artist.
Borrow a Kid
If you’re a mom, carve out a day to play with your son or daughter. If
you’re not a mom, borrow a kid for the day. There’s no better way to get back in touch with your playfulness. Finger paint, take turns telling “knock-knock” jokes, play video games, or create a LEGO sculpture. Go wherever your heart takes you.
A Well-Deserved Break
Nurturing our playful nature and tapping into the carefree feelings of childhood will surely give us a well-deserved break from daily pressures and stresses. Keep it up throughout the year, and we’ll be better able to keep our equanimity in the face of whatever life throws our way.
Drop Me a Note
I hope you enjoy this newsletter and the playful tips that are included!
I’d like to invite you to drop me a note
and share your own stress relief tips with our Plus Size Community. We just might share your experiences and feedback in a future
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Fashion's Invisible Majority"!
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