Does your family have quirks? Are there jokes that only your blood relations understand? Do new members of your family think that maybe the rest of you are just slightly off-center?
Relax. Yes, you might be crazy, but it turns out that being a little nuts probably makes your family happier.
I speak from experience. My father, my sister and I all shared a rather particular sense of humor. What made us roar left other people puzzled. . .which only made us laugh harder.
Those odd little traits have the unexpected benefit of binding us closer together. They make us different from the rest of the world, in a way that strengthens our family links. Those language shortcuts—what my husband and his mom called their verbal shorthand—almost give each of us our own family language. It might puzzle outsiders, but it makes perfect sense to all of us.
“Where’s Charlie?” asked my daughter the other day. Now anyone else might look around, wondering who on earth Charlie might be. Not me. I reached into the drawer and pulled out our rubber lid opener—you know, the gripper thing that helps you open stubborn jars. In our house, that’s Charlie. Want to know why? Because years ago—before I was born—my grandparents got one of those gripper things, and there was a dog on it, and apparently the dog was named Charlie. Since that time—probably for fifty years—our family has referred to those little doodads as Charlie. A little nuts, but it works for us.
Our quirks are what make us us, unique and special. And they vary from family to family. . .what seems perfectly rational in my house might seem a little cuckoo to someone else. I knew of a family once who didn’t eat use plates for spaghetti; they just all ate out of one central bowl in the middle of the table. That sounds really strange to me, but it was their norm.
“I’m mad. You’re mad. We’re all mad here,” the Cheshire Cat informed Alice while they were in Wonderland. And I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if one of my own felines said this to me one day. But guess what? It’s okay, because we’re all crazy together. One big happy, nutso family.
Tawdra Kandle has completed 3 young adult novels and is currently working on her forth. She is a contributor for Taking Time for Mommy – Online Magazine for Moms sharing her homeschooling adventures and couponing tips. She is also an administrator of the Time 4 Mommy Community and heads up our Writing Group.
You can find Tawdra on Twitter and follow her blog Publishing Quest.
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