Where exactly does a funny bone grow? I suppose they’re in our elbows, that place that really hurts when you hit it at just the right angle — which seems appropriate. I’m chuckling as I write this as I realize that I actually do have a very odd bone growth on the inside of my right elbow.
I was not born blowing bubbles.
This in itself is kind of funny, though I wasn’t always able to laugh with the non-bubble blowing part of me.
- I grew up in a rural setting with very few playmates.
- I grew up with a strong belief in justice, and by that I mean a focus on the things that are not just.
- I grew up, possibly like you, with the prevailing societal notion that something was wrong with me and that I had to “fix” it, or do better in some way.
All of these are solemn tasks…
And I learned that:
- solemn tasks were to be taken seriously.
- the truth contained more gravity than levity.
- the serious was somehow more true, important, or real than the silly.
From there I scrunched up my brow and hunched over my heart trying to figure out what it all meant.
Not exactly the breeding grounds for someone who now teaches playful courage.
But then again, perhaps it was.
It takes courage for me to be playful, and it takes safety, gentleness and kindness for me to be courageous.
I took the scenic route back to play which makes me a master of play and not-play, two sides of the same coin, which means I can sometimes do magic tricks.
As a result of this scenic route I know that play is relative, and always in relation to where I am at the moment.
This route has led me to sharpen these questions:
- How do I courageously share the story of who I am — playfully?
- How do I get to the place where I’m delighted by something not because it will get me love or attention but because I love it and want to give it my attention?
So, though I may not have been the most serious child in the world, let’s just say I didn’t come out of the womb making the whole world laugh.
The scenic route has brought me to a place where:
- sometimes I make myself laugh.
- my funny bone has evolved (and may be, quite literally, growing in my right elbow).
- things about myself that I couldn’t laugh with 3 years ago are now quite funny.
- I know laughter is something that can be learned, invited and encouraged regardless of the circumstances.
So, I keep going, and when I practice what I preach I keep going till the Non Bubble-Blowin’ part of me is funny. I keep going till the intense What-Does-This-All-Mean part of me is hilarious.
I keep going till I take levity as seriously as gravity.
And I love to have visitors, and playmates, and loves in my life. I love to find those de-light-full conversations together. And I am learning to say one of the most vulnerable phrases in the world for me,
Do you wanna play with me?