Going to the woods / A day out with the kids

The last week I had probably the happiest days in the last several… maybe month. Why? Bukan karena ketemu doi (emang ada doi? Ya tergantung definisi sih). Atau mungkin juga karena ketemu doi, dan hari itu dia lagi pakai kemeja + dasi, beeeuh, kece overload. Gemes banget lah. Pengen di gigit (lah apa kanibal nih? Canda ko. Kan vegetaris) Ko gemes? Karena doi tersebut umurnya tiga tahun, ya jadi gemes lah. Bukan karena doi ini doang sih. Ada kakanya (yang berumur 7 tahun) dan adeknya yang 1 tahun sekian, atau mungkin udah dua tahun (kurang hafal sama umur2 mereka sih). Pokonya tiga2nya udah kaya adek sendiri, sayangnya sejak kuliah aku jarang ketemu sama tiga bocah ini.

Minggu kemarin aku pulang rumah (ortu) dan kebetulan weekend itu ada pengajian orang2 indonesia. Awalnya mau datang kesana (karena pengan makanan Indonesia). Tapi pas hari H jadi males, terus mikirnya “Masa datang ke pengajian gara2 makanan. Salah niatlah. Kalau ke pengajian karena Allah dong, jangan karena makanan.” Daripada ke pengajian pakai salah niat, mending ga ush datang aja. Mending di rumah kerjain tugas sama bantuin Mamah & Papah. Kalau datang kesana paling ngasuh anak2 karena temanya ga terlalu tertarik. Tapi ga tau juga mau ngasuh anak mana karena sama anak2 sekarang asa ga dekat, paling sama si tiga adek kakak itu (yang tadi di certain) tapi kali mereka juga ga datang jadi ya ga usah lah.

Nah karena udh niat ga mau datang jadi ga di usahain bangun pagi padahal tadinya mau bikin kue (utk bawain ke pengajian) dan karena memang baru tidur pagi (bukan malam lagi tapi pagi). Setelah bangun tidur ngobrol sama Mama apa mau datang ke pengajian atau enggak terus kita putusin ga ush aja deh. Setengah jam sebelum waktu pengajian di mulai Mama certain bahwa temannya, ibu si tiga anak asuhku, mau datang juga. Yaaaaah padahal pengan banget ketemu sama mereka dan ga tau kapan lagi ada kesempatan. Jadi aku galau. Dan setelah sekitar 30 menit bulak balik mikir (karena rasanya udh tanggung dan ga enak datang telat) ujung2nya tetap siap2 utk kesana. Datangnya telat 2 jam. Tapi sebenarnya ga telat juga karena 2 jam pertama hanya jam kedatangan yang dipakai untuk makan siang, ngobrol2 dan sholat dzuhur. Jadi pas kita datang pas banget ketika acaranya mau di mulai. (Kita jadinya sholat dzuhur di rumah aja biar ga rese disananya). Cuma sebagian besar dari makanan sudah habis. Dan sebetulnya itu bagus karena memang niatnya udah ga karena makanan jadi bersyukur makan seadanya dan ga kebanyakan seperti biasanya. Setelah sesi pertama, yaitu ngaji quran, aku keluar nyari si tiga anak kesayanganku.

Oh yes, I just remember that I wanted to write in english actually. The first part wasn´t that important anyways. So as a summary for the part above: I went to my parents home for the weekend and on one day there was a pengajian[1] (or sohbet in turkish), where I met again with my three beloved kiddos (the children of my mother´s friend that I know since their birth and I used to take care of sometimes) after I haven´t seen them for several month. So instead of taking part in the actual pengajian (what was a talk about…. I don´t even remember what it was about) I played with the three of them.

After playing kicker for a while, which was quiet funny because the little one always grabbed the ball out of the field because he wanted to throw it in again and both of the bigger ones got annoyed by it while they learned to play it like the aggressive way within the half hour we played it (although I didn´t demonstrated them how to do this) we went outside in the woods. To be honest there was no wood around just a little meadow and some trees and plants on it. And after running around the caved square infront of the building like the other kids did, playing tagging and so on, we ended up playing Indians. We grabbed some branches that were our magic wands, our swords, weapons, shashlik spits, made a campfire (or at least tried to make the branches look like that), hunted animals, roasted a tiger (what would be a little barbaric somehow and not really suitable for a vegetarian), slept in a tent, hugged trees and  I don´t know what else. I felt like I was nine years old again (still older than them of course). But what made me really happy was to see that children still can play and have fun with simple things out of nature, that they could imagine their stories, build their up their own fantasy, without needing any expensive toys, or even worse electronics. And it just felt great to not have to worry about any of the daily tasks, duties, problems. On the other side I tried to include Islamic aspects in the play, what went quiet well in my view when reenacting a daily routine like dua before eating, before going to sleep, when waking up and some surahs. Learning while playing. So somehow I still remained twenty. But I think that´s okay. It´s okay to preserve your childhood or rather even good to do so. And spending time with kids, being a part of their play is probably one of the best things you can do for a little escape out of reality as long as you don´t forget that you aren´t a child anymore, that there are still duties to fulfill and especially that you still remember Allah in every second.

The previous day I went to visit two girls that I used to teach during the last summer break. They moved in our village from Chechenia some years ago. Because they is no mosque around and rather few muslims their father asked me to teach them about Islam and reading the Quran. So it happened that they came to our house almost every day when I had no lectures. Unfortunatly since then I didn´t managed to see them although they had called several times but I simple was too rarely at home. And this time it was only spontaneous that I stopped by at their house. I actually just wanted to go outside and get some fresh air because I was tired of study work. But because the raps field was so gorgeous I decided to go for a walk and because I was already on the way in the direction of their house I decided it would be nice to say hello. After talking to their mother who I also hadn´t seen for a long time and a neighbor of them (what was kind of a weird discussion because… it would take too long to explain that) we, the both girls and I went… to the woods! This time we really went to the woods which only took a five minutes walk.

Before we left we prayed ashr (the afternoon-prayer) what took about half an hour (of preparation) because they had to show me their new prayer clothes, their headscarfs (and other things) and that had to change them two times because… no idea because of what. But in the end we managed to pray. And I realized the difference compared to 8 month ago. Especially the little one (who is seven) seemed more concentrated. She didn´t play around or giggled or anything and even sat still after the prayer for dzikr. Mashaa Allah I was so happy about that. When we wanted to go outside the little one wanted to go out with the prayer clothe and with hijab so she would dress like me (cuteness overload). But her mother didn´t want it to get dirty so in the end she took it off.

I realized that this post is going to become quiet long so I try to shorten the next parts (as much as possible).

Back to the woods. Honestly I have no idea where to start. So after a short walk which happened to be quiet tiring because the little one brought her kettcar that she couldn´t move her own and so we had to push her almost the whole way. But it was okay because in the end I wa also allowed to try it out which was…funny but felt a little weird. When we finally arrived in the woods they showed me a tree to use as a seesaw and litle wooden hut the bigger one who is nine years old in any case wanted to take a look at because usually when she went their with their parents she wasn´t allowed. Because I didn´t want to forbid it we went to the hut. Rara (the bigger one) wanted me to join her going inside but I felt uncomfortable with the place so I told her I would wait outside with her little sister so we could run away fast in case there would anything dangerous inside (parah banget ya bikin takut). So she took a look on her own but before really entering it looked backwards and said she would hear a strange noise. I started to panic and told them to run away fastly. (I didn´t really panic I just found it funny to create a scary atmosphere.) The both started to imagine any kind of possible scenario, a serial killer living in it, or a bear, or an old person that was ill or maybe just a nice person that wanted to say hello. But the whole time they where like “I am afraid. Maybe he (whoever he might be) will run after us.” On the way to the kettcar that we had parked beside the wood we slided on a little mountain slope and Rara found a wood trunk that looked like a dragon teeth she said with some insects below. Outside the woods we drove down the hill with the kettcar, each one a few meters. Before going home we played hide and seek in raps field. What can be nicer than running through yellow field and hiding in it? (hide &seek = one of my favorite game when I was little). Back home we jumped on heap of boughs using it as a trampolin what remembered me when I and my former best friend planned to buy a trampolin but somehow didn´t realized it. Actually you don´t need an expensive trampolin, you can simply take some boughs of a tree. The day showed me that having fun, enjoying your childhood or better said enjoying life can be so much simpler than we think.

The two days with the kids showed me:

-To appreciate the simple things in life.

-Being happy can be so easy.

-Everyone has sorrows and problems but we shouldn´t give it too much space in our daily life (a long story to tell about the two girls, so just let´s say there life wasn´t and isn´t that easy.)

-Playing with children is probably a really good way to get over depressions (another long story). You feel needed. You get noticed. You get affection, at least it´s easy to give affection. You are a part (of whatever).

-Having children around makes you feeling less/ not lonely.

-Children are so much easier than adults.

-We should stay curios and not take everything for obvious.

-Be creative and use your imagination.

-Nature offers you anything you need. Anything you need may be directly infront of your eyes, you just have to see it.

(I guess there are more things I can´t remember.)

WhatsApp Image 2017-05-09 at 17.00.55(2)
Cabin in the woods
WhatsApp Image 2017-05-09 at 17.00.55(1)
Hiding inside the raps field
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The both made me dinner and decorated it (for half an hour)

I realized that being out with the both girls represented a wish that I always had when I was little – friends to spontanously come over and playing in the woods, imagining any kind of weird stories. Maybe it´s even a part of some childhood memories I have. First I thought what a pity that my childhood is already over. Then I thought maybe it don´t have to be over at all. It can still remain alive as long as we keep it alive. At least a part of it.

Two days later I went for a walk around town with my mum. We went to my former elematary school. Another childhood memory. We just sat on the swing, thinking back to the old days (at least I did that) until I only concentrated on the movement of the swing without thinking on anything – and being grateful for life.

Note: In the beginning I wrote that those were the happiest days within month. Maybe that´s not true altogether because the last month I experienced some really amazing things and met great people. Maybe they just seemed like the happiest days after a long time because there are some things I struggled with (and maybe still do) and being together with my kiddos helped me not to think about it and made these struggles seeming so far and unnecassary.

[1] A meeting of muslims where you read Quran or study about Islam/ listen to a recitation or speech about a usually Islamic topic.

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