What to do when my child believes humor to be the most highly prized quality in a person?
Our little Helen is our resident humorist, and she knows it. I have even heard her nearly deadpanning into Owen's Leapfrog recorder. "Helen is a funny girl," she said with a only a very small hint of hilarity. She regularly cracks us up with her actions, faces and words, and we mostly love her sense of humor, because we love to laugh.
But there's the really annoying side of her that cannot be serious. We look into her deep brown eyes and try to impart some wisdom to that sweet little face without busting a gut. She leads the game by a split second, and plays it well, a twitch in the corner of her mouth, as soon as she senses it might be forgiveable to laugh. She has learned very early in life that quick smiles and jests might possibly get her off the hook, should she ever find as much as her pinky toe in trouble.
Tonight before supper, Jack who has just learned to walk, had a tremendous splat of a fall, and nearly bit through his lip. In fact, Jason fished a chunk of his cheek wall out of his mouth, so we knew it was a bad bite. We got the bleeding stopped, made some phone calls to nurses in the family, and figured out he was going to be all right. And yes, yours truly had to sit down in the recliner and close my eyes while I waited for my nausea to subside, my tunnel vision to go away and my hearing to return. As I was sending Helen to bed later, I told her give Jack a kiss on the head, not the mouth, not thinking that she might leverage herself against him to lean in for the kiss. Sure enough, his lip got another sharp bump on an end table, which set his mouth to bleeding again and his pitiful soul to ear-numbing wailing. Helen's response was to sing the alphabet song at a louder decibel level to comfort and/or tease him out of his sadness. I sent her to bed, and while we were discussing Jack's ouchy, her effect on it, and praying for him, a half smirk settled onto her face.