This might be a bit too philosophical for such a simple game as we know it – hide and seek.

I took my two-year-old daughter to an indoor playground called Hide and Seek. The playground had all kinds of colorful slides, bouncy castles, and fun-looking characters. But in all raw and honest words, it all felt dull, muted, and gray despite the positive comments I would try to practice.

Past the play area is a small café, we sat there waiting for her fries. On my right, a tired-looking mother napping on a ball pillow made out of her winter jacket. I looked at her, wondering if that would be me one day. “So what if we’re a bit late! It’s not like I get to see them every day!!” shouts this guy on my left, looking left and right as he realizes everyone was looking at him while he’s still on the phone – another bitter ending to a once romantic story, I thought to myself. Behind me was this chilled mother who came with her five kids; the youngest was three years old. She was watching a show and sometimes made funny faces, so my daughter would laugh while sitting on the table dipping her hands in ketchup. I admired her energy and appreciated her kindness, but I really wondered how she did it, because I knew I couldn’t, or maybe I just didn’t want to.

It felt terrible to confront my feelings. So there I was, hiding behind thousands of questions, a roller-coaster of untangled thoughts and emotions, and the fear of judgment if they were all to suddenly burst in the form of a ruthless distractive monster.

It made me wonder, what is the delight we find behind hiding? And what are we truly seeking?

I think we are all hiding and seeking something, an emotion, a connection, an understanding, or a purpose. We all necessitate a secret, safe place where we can always go hiding, but at the same time, we don’t want to be left there alone or lost forever. We long to be discovered, whether by ourselves or someone or something. We want to be certain that we will be able to find ourselves or that someone out there will know exactly where to find us, or that they (or we) will never stop looking/seeking when lost.

I guess hiding or getting lost is not an entirely bad thing; in fact, it might be a significant need but a misfortune if we are never to be found.


Photo by: Maryam Lary