Boredom Is Good

Sarah Meyers by Sarah Meyers Additional Needs

Sarah Meyers

Sarah Meyers

I'm the mum of two beautiful, vibrant, opinionated girls, one of whom has a complex, life-limiting condition. Living in Australia (a place I'd neve...

Now that she is five, I’ve noticed that things are subtly starting to change.

She seems to find doing the same thing every day just a little bit… boring.

My child is bored!

I can’t even begin to express how excited I am about this development.

She is bored! Bored! This is the best thing ever!

I give her school a lot of credit for this.

This year she started attending school five days a week, including taking the bus to and from school.

It was a huge change – one I wasn’t sure she would cope with - but she settled into her new routine well and really enjoys her teachers, her classmates, and all the activities and different challenges that school presents.

Of course, she’s still Miss Z, so she has her grumpy moments, strongly objects to getting up early to get ready for school, and there are those days where she refuses to cooperate – so she hasn’t undergone a complete transformation!

With school providing so much additional stimulation, the school holidays are now a greater challenge. Before, she was happy to have her sister (and often several of her sister’s friend) home and rampaging through the house.

But now that doesn’t seem to be enough for her.

During the last school holidays, Miss Z’s sister did a theatre workshop in the city centre. In theory, it would work well as I only needed to drop her in the morning, and her father would collect her and bring her home in the evening.

However, I was worried about getting her to the workshop in the morning because I also had Miss Z with me. Really worried.

How would we get there? What if the building where the workshop was held wasn’t accessible?

What if I had to go up a flight of stairs to sign her sister in?

What if she couldn’t cope with the trip?

I’m a worrier to begin with, and heading off into the unknown always stresses me out.

The night before, I slept badly I was so worried about everything that could go wrong.

In the end (thanks to the extortionate cost of parking) we took the bus into the city. And it was the best decision ever.

Miss Z loved riding the bus. She’s always loved movement and the bus rocked and bounced her in her special needs stroller.

The workshop started late enough that we were able to miss morning rush hour, so people on the bus were kind and helpful and the bus drivers all adored and admired Miss Z, which made her happy as she enjoys adding to her minions.

After dropping her sister at the theatre, Miss Z and I would take a brief walk around the city (usually a route that took us past a coffee shop) and then hopped back on the bus to go home.

Taking the bus every morning to drop off your sister and caffeinate your mother may not seem like the best entertainment for a five-year-old, but it made Miss Z happy.

She was all smiles and enthusiasm when we got home.

After all, she’d had a bit of fresh air, some adoration from the bus driver and fellow passengers and a change of scenery, and was now safely home for her predictable daily routine.

And I was all smiles because she had just enjoyed an outing – a new development!

The success on the bus has also encouraged me to try more outings over the school holidays and to plan more for upcoming holidays.

Having a bored child has opened up our world.


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