If we're Facebook friends - and why wouldn't we be, by the way? - then you know my feed is often filled with funnies from my boys. We spend a lot of time in the car as do most moms of active littles and while I'm sometimes tempted to tune out and find a quiet place in my mind to deafen the roar coming from the backseat, I've learned that I miss the good stuff if I don't at least half listen to their conversations - and of course, respond to their 1,356,824 questions as we go.
On the way to church tonight, the boys were calling each other names - all harmless and in good fun, I'm certain. I mean, they're officially PKs now, right?
So, Riley pipes up with his 75th question...on our 9-mile drive. Do that average, math people.
"Mom, are weird kids cool?"
My first thought...where did THAT come from?
Second thought...how do I respond to this one? Well, let me lay down a little wisdom on you, my child.
"Absolutely! And really, we're all a little weird in our own ways."
Because let's face it - WE ARE. Whether it's OCD tendencies, messiness, strange eating habits or some other thing that makes you YOU, it's probably "weird" to someone else (Confessional: I eat mustard on my French fries. There, I said it.).
Eli - not to be left out of this classic conversation - takes a minute to ponder this wisdom I have just imparted and then declares,"Dad's awesome weird!"
After our laughter died down, I really started thinking about being "awesome weird." What if we were all awesome weird? How cool would it be for future generations if there was no "weird," no "different" - just AWESOMENESS IN BEING YOURSELF? I'm sure there would be less - or no! - bullying and a lot fewer cliques! As someone who went to THREE different high schools and often felt the sting of not feeling accepted or like I fit in, I get how hurtful feeling "weird" or "different" can be (And for the record, letting your mom perm your hair after moving to a new school is NOT the key to fitting in...at least that's what I hear, anyway.).
So, I know that's a lofty goal, but if you know me at all - I tend to set some big goals (some might say "unrealististic" but whateves!). I really think it starts with how we respond to those questions with our kids and of course, how we view ourselves. Now, I'm not going down the self image road here, because I'd need a whole series of posts for that one - I have more baggage there than a Delta lost luggage desk, my friends.
And that's my challenge to you, dear reader! Embrace your "awesome weird" this week and let others meet YOU - the real YOU. Not the trying-to-fit-in-and-hide-all-my-crazy you - the real, deal authentic YOU. The I-eat-mustard-on-my-fries-and-I'm-proud-of-it you. The I-alphabetize-my-vegetables-in-my-pantry you (For the record, that one's not me...what are these vegetables you speak of?).
I think you'll be surprised at how people will respond...I certainly have been.