Modern Mum Katrina Van Wyk.
Modern Mum Katrina Van Wyk. Contributed

Modern Mum: Kids opened my eyes to funny side

THE other day I sat excitedly waiting for my son to show me an amazing new trick he'd learnt at school.

He proceeded to place his right hand under his shirt and arm pit fart to the tune of Back in Black by ACDC. And to think, he even knew the tune (thanks Guitar Hero).

I know I shouldn't laugh at this kind of thing, but I couldn't help myself.

Years ago, and I'm talking "pre children" here, I would have found a child doing this kind of thing repulsive.

Having children (especially a son) has certainly changed me in ways I never thought possible.

I always thought I was pretty down to earth, but it wasn't until I had kids that I realised how uptight I actually was.

I remember standing behind a child at a supermarket. He stared directly at me with half his index finger lodged up his nostril. This was "pre children" and I was utterly appalled.

Now when I see a child picking their nose, as long as it's not my own offspring, I'll think "how cute" and have a giggle to myself.

Burping is another one. Again, not something I condone my own children doing, especially when done at the dinner table. But my son has a knack of perfectly timing them at inappropriate moments, then smiling proudly immediately after.

Pre children, the eyes would roll and the jaw would drop. Now I just shake my head and try to hold back a grin as I explain him how rude it is.

Then there's the issue of flatulence. This one is a ripper for any child. I remember laughing hysterically at "fluff jokes" (I say fluff, because my mother had a strict ban on the work "fart") when I was a child. As I grew up, I lost my tolerance for that kind of humour somewhere in my late teens. It wasn't until I had children that I found myself giggling once more as my two fluff machines blame each other for their embarrassing expulsions.

Finally, I am going to address the issue of peeing in public. I once stood shocked as a mother let her child pee against a tree in a busy park. …Once again this was "pre children" and I clearly had no idea.

When it came to toilet training my children, I found it was like walking an excited dog! Everywhere we went they needed to "go".

While little girls generally need to find a bathroom, most little boys are quite content finding the nearest tree.

Years ago I saw a mother embarrassingly chastise her toddler for peeing freely into a water fountain at a park.

As she looked around I gave her a little smile to reassure her that these things happen. All the while thinking, "thank goodness it wasn't my child". Of course when I looked around, to my horror I saw my son was doing the same thing.

There I stood, laughing uncontrollably with a complete stranger. So, I thank my children for bringing me back down to earth.

I shudder to think how boring my life would be without their bad habits.

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