We spent most of today outside, walking on the cold and sunny common and playing on the swings and in the sandpit.
When we got home I took Frida out of her sling and onto the sitting room floor, put the contents of my pockets on the coffee table, and sat down for a minute to rest.
Fast forward almost half an hour, and Frida was still in the same position, standing up at the coffee table and playing with and observing my purse and travel card, as well as the candles and jars I left there for her to handle.
She will often lose herself in concentration but rarely for so long just doing one thing. Observing her work with such intent was amazing.
After she seemed truly satisfied she went over to her book basket, and brought me one over to read to her (“Bouncing”). After a quick story and a cuddle she crawled off again to inspect and pull out the adult books on the book shelves, then moved over to play with her sensory sound blocks before coming back to the coffee table to retrieve my empty tea mug and “drink” from it.
She is going for longer and longer without needing my input. It is both thrilling to watch her, and a tiny bit sad. My baby is growing.
I find it hard to just leave her be sometimes. But I do believe in “benign neglect”, or leaving children to their own devices to explore, figure things out, and do as they wish without adult interference.
This age is so wonderful; she is fascinated by a cloth, a leaf, a sock. Exploring the world around her and starting to make sense of it all. I sort of wish I could pause time, just for a moment.