We played a rousing game of hide ‘N’ seek at our house the other day. The best part about this game for me is how the kids respond to being found. As I begin to count they all run away squealing and laughing. They find their spot to hide and wait. I start to walk around the house saying loudly. “Where are my boys?” “I can’t find them, I wonder where they are?” “Oh, no where could they have gone”. I look in the place next to where they are, and act surprised when I can’t find them. All the while they giggle, whisper, and fidget fighting to contain their desire to call out, “I’m over here”. If I take too long to find them they begin to make silly noises, knock on the wall, or laugh louder to give me hints as to their location. When I finally find them they cannot contain their excitement. They jump out of the hiding place yelling “surprise!” with a delighted and joyous scream. I make a shocked face, and hug them as though it had been days since we had seen one another.
Oh how wonderful it is to be discovered, to be lost, to be searched after, and to be found. I wonder what goes through their minds while they are hiding? Do they ask questions like, “will he remember me?” “Do they miss me?” or “Do they love me?” I believe that children do ask these questions. I believe that in some small way hide and seek is a grand roleplay of the longing of every child’s heart. The longing to have the hidden parts of themselves searched for and discovered by the adults in their life. As parents find the hidden treasures within your children, then they discover these treasures in themselves. Without the process of being discovered they may never uncover the gifts that are buried within. As I experience my child, so they experience themselves.