|Jack-Jack playing with an iPhone in the
middle of the kitchen table.
Through the years people often remark that Jack-Jack’s super power is how cute he is, and he is stinking adorable. It isn’t just his looks; it is his charm, the things he does, the way he does them, and now the things he says. In the darkest moments of raising him, when I wonder if we are doing right by him, I am reminded that God has a plan and purpose for his life. I look at that darling face and smile, and often I laugh. People need to know about the laughter.
Everyone talks about the devastation when realizing there is something not quite right with your child. Maybe your darling daughter or son isn’t talking or walking or developing appropriately. And realizing there is something wrong is overwhelming, and because you are living in a state of fear of the unknown, few people talk about the funny, amusing and awfully cute things their child says or does. Because, let’s face it, in the midst of all the chaos we worry, and we forget to laugh.
But Jack-Jack makes us laugh. For instance, since Jack-Jack didn’t talk until four years of age, he used other methods to communicate with us – some obviously not funny (screaming, biting, throwing things), but others you couldn’t help but giggle. Jack-Jack was very industrious. He would grab us by the hand and take you to what he wanted. He also took the smallest stacking cup and ran to the water dispenser at the refrigerator because he couldn’t reach the drinking cups. He would fill up that little cup over and over again. If for some reason he couldn’t find his stacking cups, he would pull a chair over to the sink and drink right out of the spigot. Jack-Jack’s favorite way to drink was to find someone else’s drink sitting around and drink from it. Visitors BEWARE! And we would grin at that silly little boy grabbing everyone’s drinks.
Jack-Jack is self sufficient and doesn’t ask for much. I think this caused him to develop an incredible ability to sniff out chocolate. If I would buy a Hershey Bar at the store and put it in my purse, when I walked in the door, Jack-Jack would know that I had one. One New Year’s Eve, we put out a chocolate fountain. It was sitting on our island, and we had all the usual and some not so usual dipping items. Toward the end of the evening, Jack-Jack was standing on the bar stool at the island with his head tilted, lapping the chocolate right out of the fountain. And we chuckled at that messy face with chocolate all over it!
When Jack-Jack was over 4 years old and still not potty trained, my sister suggested a technique that she read about from a “parenting expert.” This man is paid top dollar for speaking engagements and writes a weekly column; this expert must know what he is talking about. So I decided to try his advice. After breakfast you are to have your child go into the bathroom and stay there until they “potty.” Only then are they allowed to come out. If they need to stay in there for hours, you just check on them periodically. If they question or try to come out, you simply tell them, “The doctor said.” I doubted this would work, but we were desperate. I periodically checked on Jack-Jack. He was sitting on the toilet and seemed fine. After another 20 minutes, I realized that it was way too quiet. Jack-Jack had both feet in the toilet and was rolling up little balls of toilet paper, wetting them in the toilet and throwing them at the wall! Needless to say, we cleaned up the bathroom, gave Jack-Jack a bath, and dropped the doctor’s advice. A few weeks later Jack-Jack began going on the toilet all on his own.
Jack-Jack is athletic. He is always running, jumping, and being all boy! He used to stand on the back of the couch, jump off and mid-air do a somersault. He definitely has made his guardian angel work overtime! We had a car that was older. One of his favorite things to do, the summer he was 4, was jump from the roof of the car to the trunk. My husband captured Jack-Jack in the middle of the jump. Most people who have spent any time with Jack-Jack would say that if it was any other child they would worry about them falling or getting hurt, but not with him. He has a great sense of balance, and he knows his limits. But his funny antics have made us laugh throughout the years.
Since he has started talking, he has kept us amused with the funny sayings and questions he asks. Today while driving, he told me, “My booger thing is tickling me.” I told him that it was his nostril, but I am not sure that he will remember that. It may be a booger thing for some time to come, but eventually I know he will learn nostril, and booger thing will be forgotten. Another time while driving he asked to turn the wind on! At first I thought he meant roll down the window, but then I realized he wanted the air conditioner turned on. There was the time when I was walking down the stairs, and I heard Jack-Jack say, “Bird, go away. You don’t belong here.” There was a bird in the fireplace! And we laughed (after my husband got the bird out of the house)!
A couple of years ago, Jack-Jack got his finger stuck in a marshmallow gun made of PVC pipe. After using Dawn dish detergent and getting his finger unstuck, I told him not to stick his fingers in there again. He proceeded to stick his thumb in! And I laughed.
We had an older television set until just recently. We do not have cable, and the television did not have a converter box. So if we weren’t watching a movie or Netflix, the screen was just blue. I told Jack-Jack to turn off the TV. He said he was watching it, and my son David asked him what he was watching. Jack-Jack responded, “The blue.” And we all laughed!
Jack-Jack’s prayers are amusing. When he prays at meals, he goes around the table and thanks God for everyone currently eating with us. If you miss a meal, you don’t get the blessing! He often prays delightfully, “Dear God, Make it quit snowing,” or “Dear God, why won’t the snow quit falling?” While I was trying to teach him about God and heaven, I explained how heaven was a perfect place. I asked him “If the Holy Spirit lives in you, when you die where do you go?” Jack-Jack replied, “To Disney.” Just now, I asked Jack-Jack to get off the computer so I could finish typing. His reply, “But Mom, I was made to sit here.” And somehow I know that I am not the only one laughing; God smiles down on that little boy too!
|Jack-Jack and Dash at Disney
under God’s Rainbow!
Jack-Jack loves to laugh! He loves to play funny parts of shows over and over again and just laugh, and laugh, and laugh. His laughter makes me laugh. I hope as he grows he never stops finding delight in the world around him! And the thing is you never know when Jack-Jack will finally learn the correct term or how to do something. So we embrace the funny and the laughter and know that God created Jack-Jack with a plan and purpose. And God loves laughter.
Ecclesiastes 3:4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;