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‘Do something funny’ gets lost in translation


Sometimes, the topic I am going to write about comes to me quickly and easily: “Mom! My teacher is on the phone!” (She did call again, but more on that later.)

Other weeks I suffer with writer’s block. This week was one of those weeks.

So, I improvised, “Hey, kids! Do something funny so I can write about it.”

Big mistake.

My request has resulted in days full of “Hey, Mom! Watch this!” and (from the bathroom) “Mom! You’ve gotta see this!”

The back of the couch is being used as a pommel horse, my 7-year-old had to be returned to the shower two additional times in order to be appropriately clean and smelling nicely, and I have been saying things like: “Please do not stick your hand down the back of your pants!” “We do not use other people’s toothbrushes!” “Stop climbing the refrigerator!” and “Seriously? Get your toes out of your mouth!”

I discovered Silly Bands in the washing machine, marker all over my 3-year-old’s face and … and … and …

Live and learn, I guess. But, it’s likely that even had I not jokingly (really, it was a joke) requested my children “do something funny” there would still be a half-eaten, four-day-old apple in the cup holder of my car.

“Wow, what is that sickly sweet smell in here? Oh. Oh! Ew!”

It’s a matter of perspective. I can laugh at these things — or I can submit my reactions to the TV show “Snapped.”

I admit, when having “one of those days” laughing at my kids’ silliness and kidness isn’t easy.

According to the book “Unglued” by Lysa TerKeurst, I am an “exploder.” My kids can vouch for this.

However, when I made the request to my children to “do something funny” they heard, “Do whatever you want.”

And I failed to turn off the Exploder Switch.

Needless-to-say, my request backfired right in my face.

“But, Mom! You said to do something funny! This is funny!”

“Jumping off of the top bunk is not funny! It is dangerous!”

I have since revoked my “be funny” request and it has resulted in my kids resorting back to their “normal” behavior: unfiltered comments to strangers, embarrassing bodily noises and, as I mentioned earlier, another call from the teacher.

“I have to tell you what your son said today. It was so funny!”

Mom-slap to the forehead: “Oh, I bet it was …”


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