This summer, my husband decided to let my sons watch Star Wars.
Deep down, I felt that my little babies were still too young to watch anything but animated cartoon movies – however I could tell my 5.5 year old desperately wanted to know more about Darth Vader, because the other boys talk about Star Wars at school.
So, in the space of two weeks, Callum and Sean have seen all SIX STAR WARS MOVIES. My husband had to sit with them, with the remote control, starting and stopping every 3 minutes to explain each and every thing. It would have drove me crazy, but my husband enjoyed it.
My 5.5 year old was absolutely fascinated by the story of how Anakin Skywalker became Darth Vader, enemy of his own son, Luke. He was drawn to the serious drama of the whole saga of human weakness, loss, betrayal and redemption. And he was very interested in the meaning of the colour of each character’s lightsaber and the powers of the Jedi.
My 3.5 year old, didn’t care about the story at all. He just LOVED that there were robots being cut up with lightsaber, and spaceships crashing into each other. The weird looking aliens were just a bonus!
So now starts the Star Wars obsession…
Every moment of the play, every story they tell, every drawing they draw, every toy they pick up, every character they pretend to be, is centred around Star Wars, Star Wars, STAR WARS!
Perhaps 12 months ago, this craze would have irritated every molecule in my wholesome, well-balanced, politically-correct, attitude towards parenting. I don’t like fighting. I don’t like guns and lightsabers. I don’t like wars.
But. I’m seeing the unexpected benefits to all this… and I like it.
I kid you not, my boys will run off and play by themselves for 2 HOURS at a time! They will sit in the lounge room, building Star Wars ships and re-enacting scenes and characters from the movie.
They will play wonderfully and passionately. They are the best of friends. They will tell stories, laugh, cooperate, use their imagination, solve problems, burst with creativity and originality. Together. No fighting. No screaming. No whinging.
Then when things start to slow down. I’ll throw them outside, where they will play Star Wars adventures for ANOTHER TWO WONDERFUL HOURS!
It’s like an instant childhood. Just add Star Wars.
Photo caption: Sean is obviously Darth Vader. I think Callum was trying to be Yoda.