Thursday, July 7, 2011

In praise of silliness

Being a parent requires a lot of seriousness. There's a ton of responsibility, a lot of scheduling and routine and a lot of hard work. You also have to keep a straight face when telling your kids not to hit each other and you have to be somewhat stern when telling them not to do something dangerous.

There is also, thankfully, ample opportunity for being silly and I have found humor to be an incredibly important, helpful tool for getting through all of it and remaining sane. There's been more than one time where my husband and I have just looked at each other and laughed because our kids are deliberately trying to make noise so we can't talk to each other. There have been times where I've laughed because it's literally all I can do at the time, like when they're both screaming and fighting all morning and it's either laugh or go insane, or when I've been vomited on or peed on for the umpteenth time.

I am fortunate to have married an extremely funny man. One of my favorite things that he does, something that is often the highlight of my morning, is that he plays with our kids' bathtub letters while in the shower. My kids must think I'm insane because I walk into his bathroom to retrieve some towels for the laundry or to do some cleaning and I walk out laughing hysterically. You would be amazed what a man in his 40's can do with 26 foam letters and 10 foam numbers while taking a shower. Every day, I find things like "Chairman Mao's Funk Dojo."

That one was an instant classic. Here's another recent favorite of mine:

He did that one on a weekend day, and after finding it, I stumbled out of the bathroom practically crying with laughter, gasping, "Why Clive Owen?!" I seriously have no idea how he does this or where it comes from.

Most of his surreal shower messages are not for mixed company, but I did find one other G-rated one that I captured for posterity.

Silliness like this breaks up the monotony of every day routines, and I love it. I hope our kids inherit this natural, seemingly effortless creativity. They can't read their daddy's shower poetry yet, but hopefully they know that their bathtub letters are being put to an excellent and unexpected use: a creative outlet for daddy and endless enjoyment for mommy!
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