Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Importance of Humor

When you and your family are going through something like club foot treatments, it can be difficult to see past the bad things. The hard times when the baby refuses to eat or sleep because of a new cast. The looks that strangers may give you, wondering what on earth you did to your tiny baby that requires a full leg cast. Sometimes the only way to stay sane is to laugh.

Our friends helped with this by making our son's first cast a blank palate that was begging for decoration. They drew stars and hearts and wrote, "If found please contact: Mommy." As silly as it is, it helped me smile every time I looked at his cast that first week instead of crying.

Now, my husband will tell you that I'm not the funny one in the marriage. I have to admit that in this case it was absolutely true - I was always so worried about the baby's toes or the next doctor's appointment that sometimes I found it difficult to find joy in our situation. But my husband wasn't fazed by my fears or random people's looks. He told me that the next time someone asked, "Oh, what happened to your poor baby's leg?!?!" to reply, "Trampoline accident." I hated answering those inevitable questions in the elevator. I usually ended up not going into detail past "we are correcting his foot that was turned in at birth." I had trouble admitting to strangers that my child had club foot and we were doing our best to get it treated.

So the next time the old lady asked, he replied with a straight face that "we had a trampoline accident at home. Next time we'll use a net to catch him." The unwary victim sort of chuckled after a couple of awkward seconds. But my heart was lightened by the humor that my husband brought to an uncomfortable situation. I never had the courage to try his line. However, it did make me giggle, and suddenly the terrible moment was past and I still had a smile on my face.

So I encourage you to find the humor, and even joy in all things. It makes every situation easier to bear.

Thanks to Victoria for contributing to the Our Story feature for Faith Feet & Love.   If you've got a story about dealing with clubfeet, or just want to share success stories, tips, or pictures, please contact us for more details. 

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