Monday, January 10, 2011

Surviving Parenthood 101: Humor

There are moments over the past six years I could never have endured without my best weapon--my sense of humor. Moms pretty much forfeit their dignity the second they get pregnant, subjecting themselves to invasive physical exams and ultimately exposing way more of their business than they bargained for in order to bring their kids into the world. Maybe this is nature's way of preparing us for the moments of humiliation parenthood can bring.

It sounds cliche, but sometimes laughter really is the best medicince for moms and dads. Without the cathartic release of laughter, how in the world could parents be expected to survive the days when their kid catches the stomach flu and sets off a chain of events that takes down an entire family? (Lawson single-handedly took out twenty-three immediate and extended family members two Christmases ago.) I couldn't show my face in my local Kroger two to three times a week without my sense of humor, considering my kids once climbed the stairs to the manager's office while I was checking out. And my ability to laugh at myself definitely came in handy at Camden's class Halloween party, when my son burst through the door talking about how his friend FINALLY made it through a whole day without getting in trouble. I, of course, happened to be standing next to said friend's mother.

My sense of humor is a coping mechanism in the midst of chaos. However, it's also how I find joy in stressful situations and hold onto what's real and important. I'm drawn to mommy friends who have embraced similar ideas because they make me feel I can be myself and that it's okay I'm not a perfect mom. My hope is that my kids learn to laugh at themselves, too, and waste less time than I did worrying unnecessarily about what others think.

So moms and dads, embrace your inner train wreck. Wear pjs in the carpool line when your morning has been the foulest of stinkers. Let your sillies out in public in an attempt to make your crying baby smile. Wear the food in your hair with pride and know other members of the club see it as a symbol of camaraderie. Push your shopping cart through Target at a full sprint in order to get your kid to the potty in time, and try not to hang your head in shame when you don't make it. Oh, and find a store employee who can help you out with the pee puddle. People can slip in those, you know.      


  1. Eh, perfection is overrated. Very good advice for a still new mom with lots of learning ahead...

  2. I remember that Christmas with contempt, but I would do it all again to have held baby Lawson for the first time that Christmas! But, seriously we are talking Montezuma's revenge.