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Why Healthier Children Can Be A Laughing Matter

By Skye Ziemke

“Humor is a very important component of emotional health, maintaining relationships, developing cognitive [brain] function and perhaps even medical health,” -Dr. Allan Reiss, director of the Center for Interdisciplinary Brain Sciences Research at Stanford.

I make lists all the time, I love them. Sometimes, I write a “To Do” list and add things I have already done, just so I can cross them out right away. I thought today I would treat you to a sort of blog post/list mash up:

Things My Children Do That Drive Me Completely Crazy  Do Not Amuse Me:

  • Leave LEGOs on the floor
  • Wrestle each other and then try to pretend they were hugging
  • Refuse to eat any food not formed into a nugget shape or flavored like pizza

Things My Children Do Which Amuse Me:

  • Sing 80’s songs they barely know, and guess at the words (“Don’t Stop Beeeee-lieving! Hold on to the ceiling!”)
  • Tell stories to me, lose their place, and start completely over from the beginning of the story
  • Trip, misstep, or roll across the floor. Now, I know this sounds horrible, unless you recall I am the mom of three boys. Boys will never: walk if they can run, go around something they can jump over, or simply enter through a door if they can run/walk/scale up the door jam and flip into a room. Much of the time my boys can turn entering a store into an aerobatic thing of beauty. The other times, the slightly failed attempts, make me laugh (unless stitches are involved).

Things I Do Which Amuse My Children:

  • Attempt to play ANY video game.
  • Feel a need to urgently stop them in their tracks but not finding time for real words “EY! TSH-TSH-TSH-TSH-TSH..NUH, UH!”
  • Try to make my husband laugh by doing a kitchen imitation of Nicki Minaj which involves dancing, making dinner, and rapping.

A recent article published in U.S. News and World Report outlined a study which tested the impact of humor on a child’s development. The results showed that children need humor and laughter to become emotionally healthy, positive, and more resilient. Some time and effort might have been saved by asking parents what the study would find. I suppose it is nice to have confirmation. They discovered what I think most of us knew all along: laughing children are healthy children.

The following “To Do” list seems slightly daunting to me:

  • Build Child’s Brain Function
  • Improve Childs Health
  • Help Child become resilient and emotionally healthy

However, I think I could totally handle this one:

  • Spend time laughing with my child
  • Laugh at myself today
  • Tell my child he is funny

So I will be going with the second list, and I am going to text my husband right now to let him know I will be forgoing laundry duty today and goofing off instead. Surely he wants healthier children more than he wants clean shirts, right?

6 thoughts on “Why Healthier Children Can Be A Laughing Matter

  1. Melissa

    OMG! Another hilarious post. I agree 100% about how boys wil not walk around things, rather jump, flip, roll, dive ANY way but walk around. Keep up the awesome posts!

    Reply
  2. J Smedly

    I wish I could fall on the floor and effortlessly bounce back up without any pain. I must come to the terms that I am older than I used to be. Fortunately I like to laugh, even if it’s at my own expense. I’ll fall less when the ice melts,but then again I won’t laugh as much either.

    Great post! I can relate to your lists.
    Thanks for sharing.
    JSmedly

    Reply
  3. lorieb

    I too am the mother of three boys, although mine at 23, 20 and 15 have outgrown most of the things you talked about and moved on to other challenges. They still make me laugh every day though!

    Reply
    1. Skye Post author

      Thanks for reading Lorie! It is my hope that my three make it to adulthood (in one piece) and still make me laugh!

      Reply

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