We’ve all read those blog posts on “What I’ve Learned From My Kids” before, right?
This is nothing like them.
In true Daddy Anarchy style, here’s six things I’ve picked up from my quirky little three year old, Raylan.
1. UNDERWEAR ISN’T IMPORTANT
Most adults wouldn’t agree with this. I for one, not only believe that underwear is important, but I can’t tell you how bent out of shape I get when I put my boxers on backwards. Raylan, however doesn’t see things this way. Out of all the kids in the house, he’s the only one that gets up on his own, and immediately gets dressed to start his day. He puts his shorts on, puts his shirt on (usually both backwards, but he doesn’t seem to notice), yet completely neglects the ole underwear. Yeppers, my three year old goes commando. Does it stop him from his normal activities like destroying the house and teasing the dogs? Absolutely not. Does he say that he “feels weird” not wearing any underwear? Nope. He bounces around like the floors are made of trampolines. Does he care what other people think? Not at all. He’s free as a bird. Sure, when he bends over, we all get a little show, but he could care less.
2. JUST BECAUSE YOU DROP SOMETHING ON THE FLOOR, DOESN’T MEAN IT’S NOT EDIBLE
I know plenty of people, my wife included, that think that just because you drop a piece of food on the floor, it’s no longer edible. Not Raylan. He adds hours, if not days, onto the old five second rule. I’ve seen him drop macaroni and cheese on the floor and calmly get off his chair and eat what he dropped. With his fork mind you. The kid has good manners.
3. A JUICE BOX CAN BE A WEAPON OF MASS DESTRUCTION
World War II. Remember it? The USA was just minding it’s own business when the Empire of Japan caught us by surprise in a horrible sneak attack that launched us headfirst into the war. After a couple years of back and forth fighting, we decided “screw this, it ends now” and dropped the A-Bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, thus pretty much solidifying our victory in the Pacific. That’s pretty much what Raylan has to do to get his older brother and sister to stop messing with him. They’ll all be sitting on the floor playing, and Tommy (7) and Emma (5) will start teasing Raylan. Raylan’s usually a pretty good sport, but Tommy and Emma are both professional veterans when it comes to teasing. This one particular time, Raylan had had about enough and calmly puts a full juice box on the floor between Tommy and Emma, and stomps on it with all his might, making it explode in a spray of high fructose cherry berry shrapnel, soaking Tommy and Emma, and pretty much everything else in a five foot radius. Tommy and Emma were both so shocked, they went crying out of the room. Since then, much of the relentless teasing has stopped. My wife and I allowing juice boxes anywhere inside the house has of course stopped too.
4. SLEEP IS VERY, VERY IMPORTANT
Of course, this is a no-brainer. Sleep is always important. But I‘m not just talking about bedtime here. How many times do you actually take the opportunity to catch a few ZZZ’s whenever you feel a bit sleepy? Raylan has the ability to fall asleep whenever and wherever the feeling strikes him. At the kitchen table, posing for pictures, on the toilet. Anywhere and everywhere. He doesn’t stop to think “Is this a good time” or “Is this a good place”. He doesn’t care if he drools, or nods off in the middle of someone talking. He just knows that sleep recharges his batteries, and that he’s not willing to miss any opportunity to take a little nap.
5. NO NEED TO BUY EXPENSIVE TOYS WHEN THERE ARE BOOGERS TO PLAY WITH
Aside from the fact kids are born already loving their parents, I always thought that as a parent, I could hedge that bet by buying the kids the latest and greatest toys on the market. You know, just to ensure that the feeling lasted. What I’ve noticed, thanks to Raylan, is that no matter what cool new toy I get him, boogers are much cooler. He has car sets with tracks that go up and down the walls and over the roof, where the little cars jump through a flaming hoop and over a pool of real sharks…and none of that compares to a booger. He’ll play with the booger and roll it up, put it on his shirt, carry it around the house. One time he even named a booger. Boogie, he called it. (No real points for originality, but then again he is only three. And what else do you name a booger?)
6. NOTHING IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN HUGGIES AND KISSIES
What? I know I’m a bit sarcastic and whatnot, but you really think I’m that insensitive that I wouldn’t have included something as sweet and cute as “huggies and kissies”? Well, think again Fart Knockers. All my kids love hugs and kisses, but sometimes we forget to give them or ask for them. Raylan, however, is like some sort of affection compliance auditor when it comes to hugs and kisses. He never lets us forget. It’s not just a hug and kiss before bed, or before one of us leaves to go somewhere, it’s ALWAYS! “Daddy, give me huggies and kissies before you go pee and when you’re done going pee. Ok, Daddy? Just wash your hands Daddy. Right, Daddy?” or “Daddy, Daddy, when you open the frizz rator, that means to give me a huggies and a kissies. Right, Daddy? And can I have a grape soda from that frizz rator too, while it’s open, Daddy? Ok, Daddy?” This, my friends, never gets old.
So, I guess this isn’t the most normal or likely list of things parents have learned from their kids,
but then again, this isn’t the most normal Daddy Blog either, now is it? Just to show you I’m not ready to go stomp on a juice box the next time I’m being picked on, let me convert these things real quick and show you what I’ve learned:
1. Stop being so self conscious and focused on appearances. Sometimes, you have to just let go and let it all hang out. (metaphorically speaking; please, keep your underwear on.)
2. Don’t be wasteful.
3. Being a pacifist is fine, but there are times you’ll need to stick up for yourself.
4. Don’t push yourself too hard. It’s always better to be well rested and fully charged.
5. Don’t be materialistic. Some of the best things in life don’t cost a thing. (again, metaphorically speaking. I’m in no way, shape, or form encouraging anybody to go out and play with boogers.)
6. Nothing is more important than huggies and kissies.
There you have it. Sometimes you may have to look a little deeper to find meaning behind what your little ones are doing, but it never fails; there’s always a lesson lurking around somewhere.
Even if it involves freeballing, juice boxes, and boogers.
WHAT KINDS OF STUFF HAVE YOU LEARNED FROM YOUR KIDS?