Discovering a Sense of Humor

Mr. Raspberry Finger

I’m back! Man, I apologize for the sudden, drawn-out lapse. I came down with something that prohibited me from doing much of anything. Feeling better now, thanks.

Roy was such a trooper while I was sick. Clint would be fixing dinner for the two of them while I held down the couch, watching him play. Normally, he’d dash off to the other room, causing me to chase him, or beg to go ‘side? ‘side? ‘side? (Outside.) He clearly knew something was wrong, probably because he rarely sees me sitting still, let alone curled up on the couch. He played sweetly and quietly, coming up to show me a crane or offer me a book or give me one of his big, drooly open-mouthed kisses—the absolute best thing in the world, despite its potential grossness.

But the real treat, what made feeling like crap totally worth it, was that on more than a few occasions, the kid tried to cheer me up with humor. This is the first time that’s happened. At 17 months, it was probably the first time he was capable of it, really. Once, we were sitting at the dinner table, he and Clint eating, me resting my head on my arms. Roy looked at me with concern for a moment, then slowly inched his little pointer finger up his left nostril.

This is a new trick for him, the nose pick. I tried to do the right thing and tell him we don’t pick noses, especially at the dinner table, but it was just such an innocent little gesture, and I had so little energy, and c’mon. He was right on. Nose picking in certain situations can be pretty funny. I managed the reprimand, but it came out with a laugh. Which made him grin and jam his little finger up there further. This degenerated into about 5 minutes of me cry-laughing, “Roy, no! Doesn’t that hurt? Stop!” and him rotating nostrils and doing a little chair dance, laughing right along with me. If I was encouraging a future booger-picker, so be it. I’d deal with that on a day when I didn’t so badly need a laugh.

His cheer-up efforts did not stop there. Over the next few days, whenever he’d eke a laugh out of me, he’d ham it up to prolong that laugh as long as possible—his new favorite is purposefully mixing up titles, like calling me the dog’s name or his grandma a monkey. I’m a writer. That he’s found humor in word play thrills me to no end. But mostly, I love that he’s discovered the power of being able to change someone’s mood for the better. And that he really seems to like it.

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Tags: | Categories: Development, Fun, Love And Diapers

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  1. by Stefanie

    On July 7, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    This is the best – some of my favorite memories as a child are making my parents laugh. Lovely! PS finger in nose is fine. Finger to nose to mouth is where it starts to get icky…:)