Whenever I don’t laugh at something my 16-year old son thinks is funny, he asks me if I was EVER a kid. Just last week he told a friend that he believes Grandma delivered me as a “grown up”.
The truth is, somewhere along the parenting-teens years, I have admittedly grown more serious.
Why my son doesn’t think I was ever a kid:
1.) I am too much of a deep thinker, and not enough of a laugh-er.
2.) I am humor-challenged. This is the residual of my ever-running, analytical mind.
Example: Last December, my daughters and I were at a Christmas craft fair. They told me a joke. I didn’t get it. They laughed even harder watching my eyebrows furrow, my head tilt, and my blank stare prevail. I asked them deep, thoughtful questions, attempting to understand. They rolled their eyes. 25 minutes later, I burst out laughing in front of several cashiers. I finally “got it”, and because it took me so long, I laughed even harder, until my daughters were both mortified at how I was carrying on.
3.) I don’t play like they do. When my kids were little, I was out the door every summer day by 9am, rollerblading behind a triplet stroller, and days were packed with play time. For years, I played all sports with them, swam, acted out pretend shows and participated in hours of hide-and-seek. They don’t remember much of it. Now that they are older, my kids think my idea of play time is reading a good book or visiting a museum.
4.) I believe my children should be somewhat-versed in American history and current politics. I argue that knowledge makes us better citizens, and me a wiser teacher and parent. History and politics in teen language: BORING.
5.) I like order. Labels. Symmetry. Clean counters. This makes my kids crazy.
How I’m becoming a little “lighter” this year, and getting in tune with my “teenage-self”:
1.) Instead of reaching for a book because “I should” read (when I’m in the mood to watch something mindless on television), I turn on the TV.
2.) I’m on the lookout for funny 🙂 things and, I purposely began my year in January by going with my family to see Tim Hawkins. If you have not heard of him, you must follow him on Twitter, look him up on YouTube, and see his comic show asap!
3.) My son dressed up in his street goalie pads the other day and I took shots on net. We played basketball for an hour (limping around on my bad ankle). I’ve been playing games and swimming (even after rain cools down the water!).
4.) I’m watching less national news (I’m an admitted news junkie). I’m still informed, but I’ve (almost) completely ceased spouting remarks at the screen.
5.) I close my son’s bedroom door when company is coming. I tell myself the floor is a great place to keep freshly washed clothes. Who needs drawers?