Jon’s eyes momentarily glanced into mine, then he shrugged. I knew he wouldn’t reply and continued to the punchline.
“Because the chicken was on vacation.”
He grinned slowly at first, and as he thought about it began to chuckle.
I love it when we connect, when Jon actually responds to me with something besides annoyance and frustration. I’m thrilled when my son emerges from his own world, interested in interacting. It happens so rarely that I try to drop whatever I’m doing and soak up the joy of the moment.
Our communication would seem juvenile and insignificant to an outsider, Jon singing me a Disney song or repeating a phrase from a movie, but I know it’s huge.
Today, when he began to lose interest and turned to walk away, I tried to hang on to it a little longer. I started reading him jokes from a website.
“Why do fish live in salt water? Because pepper water makes them sneeze.”
Got a smile from that one and also this one, “Where do sheep go on vacation? To the Baaaaahaaaaamaaas!”
Then, “What do you a call a pig who knows Karate? A Pork Chop.”
Jon thought on that one for a few seconds and shook his head. He expelled a long hiss, sounding like, “Ghhhheee,” and said to himself, “that’s not funny,” frowned, then turned away.
Just like that. One joke, determined to be dumb, and it was all over. I tried reading more as he walked away but the connection was gone, just like a computer system that had suddenly shut down.
For fifteen minutes, my son wanted to “talk” to me today. It might not seem like much, actually it’s never enough.
But it was the best fifteen minutes of my day.