To the parent with the loud kid,
Can we be friends?
'Cause I've got one too.
Who am I kidding?
I've got three.
That yelling – that's mine.
Those belly laughs – they are mine, too.
That unruly cackling – yep, you guessed it — mine as well.
That noise — it's mine — all mine, and I will never, ever apologize for it.
And, a little over two years ago, I very publically informed the world that I wouldn't apologize for it.
I wrote an article informing the general public that most of the noise which comes from my three joyful, often messy, surely snotty-nosed is a sign of life; a happy life which we are carefully curating as a team.
I shared that our noise is a sign of learning – my children and my husband and me — all learning from and about each other and ourselves.
I even vowed that our noise is a sign of courage and declared my hope for my children that they always dare to ensure their noise and their voice is heard on any damn topic they feel passionate about.
People didn't like my words.
People remarked that "kid noise" is disruptive and that, more often than not, it borders on being disrespectful.
Today I took my brood to an aquarium.
Today my kids used every volume, but the one I asked and wanted them to.
Because they were excited.
They were happy.
And they just couldn't reign it in.
And why should they?
Life is short, and far too many of us adults spend a considerable portion of ours, unnecessarily muzzling ourselves and our kids.
There is absolutely nothing disrespectful about loving life, each other, experiences, and moments as you're living them.
And love, well, that's all you're hearing.
You are hearing me love my kids.
You are hearing my kids love each other.
You are hearing them love their environment.
You are hearing me teach them about showing love to strangers.
YOU ARE HEARING NOISE BECAUSE CHILDREN ARE MEANT TO BE HEARD.
Yep, that's the line that got everyone fired up in the first article, too, so I'll go ahead and repeat it.
You are hearing noise because children are meant to be heard.
All of their noise — their happy noises, their curious sounds, and their range of noises that express the gamut of emotions they feel daily.
I said it once, and it bears repeating, I will never apologize for the noise and, if you have kids, you shouldn't either.
They are meant to be heard.
They are meant to be seen.
And they are meant to be loved and appreciated for the curious and endearing goofballs they naturally are.
As I sit here writing this from the inside of a noisy AF play place, I say to anyone bothered by a family's noise, chill the heck out and instead of judging them and theirs, go ahead and start making some noise of your own.