Laughter really is the best medicine.
Pam and I for years laughed at our kids and their antics. While we still laugh behind their backs about their ridiculousness from time to time, more often we find ourselves these days getting tickled with our kids over random things life throws at us.
That’s a great thing because life throws curve balls and to me the best approach is a light-hearted way. There are so many things that mandate being taken seriously in adult life, but there are times when a good laugh is needed. It’s fun to share those moments when they involve our kids.
Some examples to illustrate the point:
•While at the Berlin Fiddlers Convention last weekend, Carson pointed out something hilarious to all of us.
We were standing off to the side and watching an act perform. I thought we were listening to the band on stage, but Carson evidently was scanning the crowd because he let all of us know about an older man nearby who was seated in the crowd.
The guy was using one of the handheld promotional fans for the events in a creative fashion. Rather than fanning himself with it, he literally stuck it directly to his face to block the sun. We all had a good laugh about it from a distance not to be rude.
Later, as you would expect, Carson affixed his to his face to block the sun as well. It just happened to be we were home at that time.
•One night I went up to Beckett’s room because it was time for bed. He started immediately giving me grief, which I expected because it’s a nightly thing at bedtime. What he said did surprise me, however.
“Dad, that’s not fair, why are you taking away my five minutes?,” he said in a tone that was a cross between an uneducated gangster and a babbling toddler.
It was hilarious at the time and it’s been ongoing, such as in the morning when I wake him up for school.
It wasn’t until later I came to the conclusion that he had changed his clock in his room to make it five minutes behind the actual time so he could have extra time before bed. I didn’t find that nearly as funny as this new tone he created.
•Carson has a goofy sense of humor and typically laughs at immature things. I like that about him, probably because that’s the way I am.
As I was running around the house the other morning – a daily occurrence especially on school days – I tripped over one of the dogs and said, “man down.”
Carson then came in to the kitchen, faked the same thing and then went and picked up both dogs and not so gently tossed them outside.
As he walked back, he was laughing and signed, “all done.” He took care of the situation in his mind.
•Carson can’t throw a football well. In fact, he’s terrible at it. However, turn him around, have him toss it backwards over his head and he’s incredible with accuracy and distance.
Beckett is great with a football, throwing a tight spiral every time with impressive range. However, turn him around, have him do it backwards in Carson fashion and it’s ugly.
One day recently I asked Beckett to show Carson how to throw a football the right way. They worked together for about 60 seconds (about all they could manage) and there was a little improvement. Since that had run its course, I asked Carson to show Beckett how to throw it over his head backwards.
The result of that was an incredible throw from Beckett that hit me in the back of the head. I turned and gave them both the look. Beckett immediately replied, “what can I say? Carson is an amazing teacher.”
Carson ran off toward the trampoline, laughing with his arms over his head like he won an Olympic medal. Beckett then imitated him, causing me to lose it.
•One morning recently was a particularly harried one for me. I was stressed because my typical routine got disrupted by a work situation.
I was so mixed up I ended up walking out of the house without my shirt on.
Carson thought that was the best thing ever, giggling while ripping off his shirt and stuffing it in his backpack. We should all be as comfortable in our skin as Carson. Beckett was having none of that because he didn’t want to mess his hair up. He’s 10 years old, after all.
I ran back inside and grabbed my shirt and encouraged Carson to put his back on. He wasn’t hearing it. Instead, he waited until it was his turn for school drop-off to put his back on.
Before he did, however, he insisted on doing one more thing. I obliged because I wanted to get him out of the truck on his way to school in a good mood. He wanted to open the sun roof so he could stand up in the truck and look outside. He did after rubbing his belly for all to see.
Only after that would be put his shirt back on. Fortunately, it wasn’t picture day because he was a wrinkled sight.