Monsters & farts

“I am scared of zombies because they take your brains. I run away from them.” Art work by Josh. Age 6.


When Josh was 3 years old, one day he told me he couldn’t sleep because he was afraid of monsters. I had no idea how to respond to that, so I blurted out the first thing that came to my mind: “Oh don’t worry, baby, we don’t have monsters in our house. You fart so much, and the monsters stay away.”

I don’t know where that came from, and I was grasping for straws, but it worked. He took comfort in the fact that he farted constantly, and it protected our home from monsters. Over the past few years, I had to repeat that a few times, and also make sure Cliff tells the same story. I always wonder how long this story will last.

Two nights ago, while snuggling with Savanna in her bed, she said she was afraid of monsters. I said, “don’t worry, Josh’s farts keep the monsters away.” She asked if I was sure, I said absolutely. I also asked Josh to confirm that he has never seen a monster in his life. She then was happy to change topics.

Today, I saw Josh’s teacher post a blog on the kids’ drawings and writing. Josh wrote on his, “I am scared of zombies because they take your brains. I run away from them.” On one hand, I am relieved that he didn’t say he farted so much and the zombies ran away. I wouldn’t want to have to explain to the other parents how we teach our kids at home. On the other hand, I’m a little sad that he didn’t talk about using his farts to scare away the zombies. It makes me wonder if my fart-and-scare-the-monsters story is going hold up much longer.


Josh turns six


Dear Joshie,

If I have to sum up what you are to me, it would be that you are my inspiration.

Last winter when I saw how hard you worked to learn skiing, I was inspired to learn it too and keep practicing. When I saw how much you love swimming and how comfortable you are in the water, I was inspired to re-learn swimming and face my fears. When I saw how fearless you are with trying out roller coasters, I gathered up the courage to get on the ride with you while screaming through the whole ride.

You are kind, loving, fearless, soft hearted, and always optimistic. You make me want to be better, and be like you. Your enthusiasm for life is infectious.

You love to bake. You love riding your bike. You love going to school and being with your friends. You love puzzles and building Lego. Your favorite food is cauliflower soup, noodles, tofu, mac n cheese, and chicken strips.

In the past year, you have revealed more of your personality and interests. You have grown out of the Cars (Disney Cars) phase completely, and pretty much gotten past the peak of the dinosaurs phase. Lego is still a favorite and constant go-to, and you have really taken an interest in Pokemon. Our living room is starting to be taken over by Pokemon cards, and you constantly quiz me about Pokemon characters and their powers and weaknesses. With each phase of your life, I feel like you are just going at the speed of light and I can barely catch my breath when the next phase hits.

You have also really shown an interest in science–anything related to nature, animals, insects, or plants. You often tell me tidbits about a certain fish or a plant that I have never heard of. You amaze me with the amount of information you retain in your noggin.

You can be a typical boy. You run around the playground with boundless energy. You constantly skin your knees and put holes in your pants. You knock over things at home. You step on my toes. You forget your lunch box at school.

Yet, your softer side is present in our daily lives. When you get a treat, you always ask if Savanna can have one. You cuddle up with me in the mornings and tell me you love me. This morning you didn’t want to wake up Daddy to get your birthday present, “Just in case Daddy is extra tired today.”

I love you more than anything in the world. You amaze me and inspire me. Thank you for being my baby. Happy birthday, and I wish you all the love and adventures in the world.