My daughter is silly. I wish she was snuggly. I wish she was a kid who wanted to crawl in my lap and sit together, showering each other with kisses and hugs. But she’s not. She’s a kid who will kiss every stuffed animal you hand her, but who will run away giggling when her mother or father puckers up. She is a kid who will pull me into her tent (“Momom. Tent.”) to hide from Dad, breaking into hysterics as he pretends to look for us.
I was a silly kid. I was a silly adolescent. I was a silly young adult. But somewhere between freshman year of high school and freshman year of college I lost a little of that silliness. It still came out from time to time (a joke, a funny face), but self-consciousness about peers and boys and my body took over. Then came college and I was serious, a competitor, cool. And the silliness was almost all gone.
My husband brings out my silliness. He is a goofball to say the least. But even though I am silly with him, I am often reserved. I don’t skip or jump or play games. I write lists; I make plans; I stand with both feet firmly on the ground.
I come from a silly family. I have very clear memories of my father playing The Little Mermaid soundtrack on a portable tape player and dancing through the lobby of our apartment building. He made up voices on our way to school to make us giggle and wake us up (Olly and Dr. Ishkabibble, although he claims he does not remember this). I know I want to be that silly mom for my daughter; I don’t want her laughs to only come with Dad.
So tonight as I was making her dinner and she colored in her high chair I put on a Disney Spotify playlist. I found myself dancing as I flipped her scrambled eggs (my girl LOVES scrambled eggs. Yuck.) when all of a sudden a heard a giggle. I turned and she was looking at me, marker poised over her paper, giggling.
“What are you laughing at, silly girl?” I asked. She reached her hand out for mine. I walked over to her and she began to swing my hand back and forth, giggling. She wanted to dance.
So I turned the scrambled eggs off. They needed to cool anyway. And I danced. I jumped and I skipped and I did my best Tina Turner as I sang to Disney classics (and not so classics. But that’s another story.). And my girl laughed and laughed. After dinner we continued our dance party, this time with her joining me in my sweet moves until my husband came home. As he walked in, we were both giggling uproariously, as we jumped chasing each other around the island in our kitchen. He joined in and I got to take a deep breath. My silly stamina isn’t quite where it should be, but I’m getting there.
This post is part of the Slice of Life writing challenge hosted by Two Writing Teachers. You can find out more about the challenge here!