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Oh, you want to wrestle!?

October 13, 2009
Photo by Ucumari

Photo by Ucumari

One thing My daughter and I have always enjoyed doing is wrestling.  Well, it really isn’t as much wrestling as it is tickling, crawling, laughing, and cuddling – but she calls it wrestling.  It’s always been one of our special times.  Just recently my Smiling Son has figured out how fun this is too!

He and I go through phases in our relationship.  Several months ago, it was like a switch was flipped and he became infatuated by me.  It was awesome!  If this is what it’s like to be worshiped, then bring it on – ‘cuz my son was worshiping me.  Then a a couple of months later, The Wife attended an event and took Darling Daughter.  My son looked at me with distrust a bit of fear.  It was as if he was saying, “Do you have what it takes to meet my needs?”

What if I get hungry?  What if I need a diaper changed?  What if something happens and I start crying – do you have what it takes?

It was pretty funny really, but I had to dial back the machismo and be more tender.  I had to reassure him that I could meet not just his wants, but his needs too.

Then in the last two weeks, Smiling Son has discovered wrestling.  He wrestles with me, he wrestles with his sister, he tries to wrestle with his (“I am not a playground; your Daddy is a playground!“) Mommy, and sometimes he lays on the cats hopping they’ll wrestle with him.  He comes up to me and says something along the lines of: “ree? ree? Ree!?”  Which of course sounds a lot like his words for raisins, water, new diaper, potty, kitty, and a few I haven’t figured out yet.

Photo by Ucumari

Photo by Ucumari

But in the last couple of days I’ve figured it out – there is only one thing he wants from Daddy with that sort of urgency: “REE-e!

Oh!  You want to wrestle.

Yeah!” He says, with the one of the words he has perfect diction.

No way!” I laugh.

Yeah!” He says.

No – not you?  You want to wrestle?”


No way!

Yea-Ah!” He laughs in anticipation and I go over and lie on the floor.

He loves to stand on my chest and jump off, tickle my stomach, and have me hold him tight and roll around.  I can pick either kid up by the back of their thighs and pretend they are on a precarious balancing ride that may drop them off at anytime.  We laugh, we tickle, we roll around, I chase them on hands and knees, and they chase me.  We have an absolutely great time!

Sometimes while playing with my Darling Daughter, she will exclaim, “This is the best day in the whole world!”  It is awesome.

Photo by CC Carlstead

Photo by CC Carlstead

Tonight while reading kids books, I came across a photo of a lion and her cub. In my head, I imagined that cub running, playing, biting, and tugging on its Daddy’s tail.  That’s what my son is doing – that’s what my daughter is doing.  Lately too, my son, who sleeps in our bed with us, has taken to cuddling with me all night long.  I love this job!

PS: The coolest thing ever though, is to watch my kids wrestling with each other – their laughter and giggles are so authentic and so absolutely delightful.

  1. danceswithklingons permalink
    October 14, 2009 9:17 am

    My middle DD is wanting to wrestle w/Dad. Not tickle but really wrestle. No idea where that came from but she loves it.


    • October 14, 2009 10:05 am

      Kids need the contact! And with the mistrust of strangers, the learned propriety (no touch) of even close friends, and the absence of grandparents – kids will find a way to get that very real touch that they need. Two psychologists that I know, say that the lack of touch is physical abuse – I believe it. The sad thing is, there will come a day when I won’t be able to wrestle with my daughter anymore. I’m already grieving that necessary step.


  2. Terre permalink
    October 14, 2009 10:49 pm

    Gary, you are getting to experience joys that only a parent can know.


    • October 16, 2009 1:35 am

      Tonight – after several days of the upper respiratory crud, and other general maladies, we were off to bed a little early. Smiling Son was just not smiling…

      “Do you want to walk?”


      “Do you want to rock?”


      “Do you want to cuddle?”

      “Noooooo. ”

      So, I scooped him up and walked into the dark living room. I sang, I swayed, and he snuggled down into my shoulder and neck. I’m pretty sure he was asleep within minutes…

      As I looked out into the forest and sang made up lullaby songs of love – I thought of my Father, and His love for me. Not only do I not want my son to be unhappy, but my Father doesn’t want me to be unhappy either.

      The joy you speak of Terre – that is the joy my son feels from me – and the joy I experience from my Father.


  3. October 16, 2009 4:10 pm

    It is time spent…our youngest two are much closer to their father than the first three were at this age. He was young and driven and working a lot when the older ones were little. They all loved their dad but these two adore him, they crave his attention and are completely swept away by the awesomeness of their father.

    Enjoy…this is when being a parent is at its best. It prepares you to still love the teenagers later to come! Kim


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