I have found that since Mini-me suddenly turned from baby to toddler, that my inhibitions have pretty much diminished. I went from thinking I didn’t care what people thought of me, to actually not giving a toss what people think of me. It’s changed my life for the better and I owe it all to her.
I’ve always been a performer. I’ve dressed up. I’ve worn ridiculous costumes. I’ve danced ridiculous dances. I’ve even stripped to my undies…but always in the safety of the stage. My local theatre stage has allowed me to be dozens of different characters; the Liesl, the lady, the bitch, the hooker – and more times than enough, the blonde bimbo.
But no stage equates to the characters a Mummy can assume when raising a toddler!
At present, Mini-Me often assigns my character to me. “Look Elsa!” or “No Anna. I have to find Sven“. Games that require the adoption of instant imaginary persona, are even coming more naturally to my Husband, who more often than not has to break into sporadic song, (whether he likes it or not!).
I’ve been every Disney Princess imaginable. I’ve been an elephant. I’ve been a spaceship. I’ve been a mouse and I’ve been a scary monster. Whatever she wants me to be really.
Today, I am Tinkerbell (apparently) as I am donning a green bobbed wig and am dressed from head to toe in green for our St. Patrick’s Day celebration at school. I look ridiculous. A part of me feels ridiculous. I wouldn’t have dreamed of dropping her to childcare and driving to school like this a few years ago. I nearly didn’t this morning!
“I can’t do this…can I?” was my first though when I looked in the mirror. Then, she bounced around the corner and her wee face said it all. She grinned and announced “Oh Mummy! Your gween hair is boooootiful! SilleeeeMammeeeee!”…and so, feck it, it stayed on.
Yes, people are laughing at me. I made quite a few students giggle and snort as I flounced to my classroom. I’ve had colleagues shake their heads, baffled…but people are smiling. I decided to teach my first years Ceilí dancing instead of Poetry. They loved it. So did I. They think I’m silly (or crazy as one of them happily told me!). So do I!
But I’m having fun and if nothing else, I might just be teaching some of them that standing out and being different is harmless. If they think it’s silly, good! If they think it’s fun, even better! If they don’t like the wig, they can ignore it. Some people will always be uncomfortable with fun. There’s not really much we can do about that is there?
Mini-me has taught me how to play again. She’s teaching me that it’s OK to be silly. It’s much more fun than being serious all the time. I adore how she’s happy to wear her Elsa dress into town. I admire how she smiles happily when people tell her she’s beautiful. I love how she spins around when someone tells her that they love her dress. My response to that is “Penneys best!”, automatically dismissing the compliment.
We don’t take compliments very well. We don’t usually put ourselves in the spotlight… well, off the stage anyhow. We dress as fashion allows, so as not to stand out too much. We’ve forgotten how to be silly.
But we should be silly. We should wear what we want. We should sing at the top of our voices, even if it’s awful. We should wear green wigs if the occasion presents itself. We should teach our kids to be who they want to be, how they want to be, and not to worry too much what people think of them.
She’s teaching me to be silly. I’ll happily oblige! It’s liberating. It’s free and it’s fun!
And while, I’ll be teaching Shakespeare in about 20 minutes time and being very serious, I’ll also be wearing a green wig. What my LC class make of that, is completely up to them.
Because today, I am indeed Silly-Mum! x