Choosing Laughter

Choosing Laughter – by Sharon Sheppard


“These are the best years of your life,” my father insisted.

If these are the best, I thought, I’m in real trouble.

My babies were born thirteen months apart, and postpartum depression clung like smog.  Everyone wanted a part of me—my breastfeeding baby, my rambunctious toddler, my devoted husband.  Exhaustion reigned.

If only I could get both children to nap at the same time!

One afternoon an extended period of blissful quietness gave way to suspicion.  I tiptoed to their room and peeked in.

Jonathan had pulled a planter off the top of the chest of drawers, uprooted the philodendron, and shared it with his sister, Caroline.  Who knew he could reach the chest of drawers from his crib?  Both mattresses were littered with potting soil.  Telltale rings of dirt circled their mouths.

Jonathan had also managed to pry open a jar of Vaseline, and the two of them had papered the walls around their cribs with Vaseline and Kleenex.  I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.  I had a choice to make:  I could wish away these precious years, or I could decide not to sweat the small stuff.

I laughed.

My dad’s favorite Bible verse came to mind:  “This is the day the Lord has made.  Let us rejoice and be glad in it.”                                                                                       

Psalm 118:24 NIV

©Copyright, Sharon Sheppard