August 9, 2011

Tub-Full Tuesdays: Letting Go

We love Tub-full Tuesdays. Today, Mom stops by to share a story about what fills her tub. Enjoy!
Tia and I often talk about the beauty and medicinal effects of laughter. Even in stressful, tension filled situations, sometimes laughter is what breaks the threads, allowing them to come unraveled so we can see the injustice and nonsense of the ordeal.
When my girls were teens, we had what I called standoffs. Does anyone know what I’m talking about? Well, here’s one scenario:
Mother to daughter, “I found your report card in the wash.”
Daughter to mother, “So?”
Mother to daughter, “Don’t give me that attitude, young lady!”
No response.
Mother to daughter, “Are you listening to me?”
No response.
Mother to daughter, “You have five seconds to explain yourself. The timer starts now!”
No response. Eyes lock. The stand-off begins.
Am I the only one this has happened to? Well, it happened to me too many times, but on one occasion a huge lesson was learned–one I’ll never forget and hope my daughter hasn’t either. It’s the beauty of laughter at its height.
Same scenario…
No response. Eyes lock. The standoff begins.
Tension shifts to body parts, eyes shift right and left, arms held at waist level soften downward, and the tapping foot slows to a halt.
Uncomfortableness shifts in . . .
Then you get an itch in your nose, you refuse to obey it, knowing if you do you’ll lose the lockdown . . .
At the same time, you notice the twitch in your daughter’s eye. You hope it’s something behind her contact and you hope the pain is unbearable, at least for the moment. You sigh in triumph, thinking fate is on your side.
Within seconds, it’s all you can do not to twitch . . . you suck in air and hold it, hoping it will abate the instinct.
You concentrate, studying the lone tear bubbling at the corner of her eye and watch in glee as she finally squints to release it. Yes, you’re winning. She doesn’t have what it takes!
More tears follow, but it’s getting harder for you to concentrate on them. The twitch is gaining control. You are turning blue, your mouth pinches so tight it draws down to your chin. You can no longer contain it . . .
With tears streaming and one eye batting furiously,
Toes digging deeper into the carpet, snorts resounding more intently,
Both, simultaneously reach, eyes still intent, toward a swelling eye and an extended nostril.
Then it happens, the laughter erupting in a concert of heaves and ho’s. One swiping tears, the other vigorously scratching her nose as they tumble to the floor, laughing more.
Later, after the evening meal, the daughter stops by her mother’s bedroom, leans against the doorframe and announces, “Guess I was wrong about the report card.” She shifts her weight and begins again, “My grades weren’t what I expected. I was disappointed. It wasn’t about deceiving you or Daddy. It was about me being mad at me.”
“Thank you for sharing with me,” the mother adds, proud of the young woman standing in front of her.
She turned to leave and halted, facing her mom once more. “That was the best ever!”
“You and me, laughing.”
Today when I look at her, I remember, and for a moment my nose twitches, not from anger but wanting to laugh all over again!


Please share a time when sadness or anger turned to humor, and how it's good for the soul.


Christine said...

Love this. I know the stand-off all too well.

Tia Bach said...

Me, too. Isn't it nice when they turn into something good? Thanks for stopping by. I always love to hear from you.