Kirsten Panachyda

Writer, Speaker, Singer-Songwriter

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10x as Sweet

Going through a hard time, like walking a child through a mental health crisis, can bring emotions to just beneath the surface. One small touch can release them. Of course this is true of tears, hanging there behind the eyes, tightening the throat. But I found that on days when I felt tremulous and ready to cry, that vulnerability also affected my funny bone.
Laughter is ten times as sweet when it surprises me during a time of pain. So for my tenth post, I decided to share some “funnies.” (Does your family call them that too?) These are moments in dark seasons. Some people may find them a little inappropriate, but we roared with laughter- and it was good medicine.


Our family rode along the highway in silence, broken by Alex, who had his mind on his theater homework.
“Do you think I should write a character in my play who just comes in and falls asleep?”
I thought about it for a moment. “Only if he wakes up occasionally and mumbles something.”
Silence ruled again for half a minute. Then, all four of us in unison:
“I wanna ride the pony!”
I guffawed and snorted without dignity. When I paused to gasp for breath, Dan said, “Are you going to laugh the whole way there?”
“Yeah, and intermittently for the rest of the day.”
And I did.


(P.S. Dear Reader, if you missed this reference, please go back and watch Toy Story again. Maybe it wasn’t the soundtrack in your home for two years straight like it was in mine.)


We were staying at a bed and breakfast inn. At the communal table in the morning two other couples and our family, full of delicious breakfast, chatted over coffee and tea. One couple was older with adult kids and young grandchildren. The other couple was young, newlywed, no kids yet. The older couple shared some marital and parental wisdom with the newlyweds, who were charmingly grateful. But when the subject turned to parenting teens, the older man shook his head. “Sometimes I thought I should just check myself into a mental hospital.”
I leaned over and whispered to Dan, “We went the other route. We stayed home and sent our teen to the mental hospital.”
We excused ourselves from the table soon after, and fled to our room where we giggled uncontrollably.


I dumped the white and beige pills out of the little cup into Nicholas’s hand. He stood there examining them for a moment. “What’s wrong, honey? Is the dose wrong?”
“No, I was just thinking. You’d think they’d make pills for depression in happier colors.”

How about you? Any funnies to share?

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