Last night at dinner, my children asked my husband to tell them the ranch dressing story. This is a story he has told them many times before about accidentally pouring ranch dressing all over himself when he was a kid. When the story ended, the kids asked for another, and another, and another…. My wonderful husband regaled them with the numerous mistakes of his younger years.
During one car ride with their grandparents, he and his older brother annoyed his grandmother by saying things like, “Did you know about the Hoover DAMN? Look over there at that DAMN. Beavers are good DAMN builders….” (Children have an amazing ability to find the line and dance on it.)
Here is a real gem: My husband (about age 7), his brothers, and some older cousins decided that they were going to establish a new order during a family get together. They were tired of all the adult rules, so they forged a plan. This plan included using an old sword from the basement and a 22 from their grandpa’s room. My husband was sent by the older kids to retrieve the gun. He sneaked past the adults into his grandpa’s room and came out with a gun down the leg of his pants. He was stopped by his father, and the plan was foiled. (Every boy dreams of world domination.)
My husband’s mistakes continued as he got older:
-He got kicked out of a class as a freshman in high school, so he walked to McDonald’s for a snack and came back with a soda. (His teacher never noticed the soda.)
-He was using a knife with an apple, and he accidentally cut the tip of his middle finger off. (The kids thought it was so funny that he had to hold his middle finger out while he waited to get the tip sewn back on.)
-He accidentally hit his mother’s car, and he drove away without telling his parents. He was so upset with himself that he pulled the steering wheel off his own car in his frustration. (Hulk smash!)
You get the point. My husband did some crazy things.
I loved the stories last night. 1. There is nothing that makes me happier than the sound of my children laughing. 2. My kids learned that we all make mistakes. 3. My children could see that although their dad made some big mistakes, life went on, and we were all able to laugh about those mistakes.
Mistakes make the best stories because we can learn to laugh at ourselves and see that life carries on. No one is perfect, and there is no point beating ourselves up over every mistake. In the big picture of life, most of our mistakes are reduced to funny stories at the dinner table.