Defiance

Recently, Jack has begun doing things he knows he’s not supposed to do.  We can tell he knows because he a) waits for us to look, and b) makes the same face every time, a face that clearly says “Oh ho ho, look at what I’m doing” and dares us to do something about it.  I would love to catch that face on camera, but when I see it, I have to be ready to catch him.

The face, which is similar to “the face” but with so much more devilishness, appears when he’s about to open a cabinet he shouldn’t be in, or when he’s standing on his chair, or when he’s snatching his hand out of mine when we’re walking along the street.  That one is usually followed by demon possession and a growled “NO” when I try to get his hand back, then angry crying while seated on the sidewalk until I can pick him up and distract him.

The sidewalk incidents aside, why does it have to be so funny when he dares us to tell him no?  I knew this day was coming, when I was going to have to find a way not to laugh when I need him to take me seriously, and I knew I wasn’t going to be prepared for it.  Over the weekend, he kept standing up in his blue chair, and John and I had to take turns – one turned away to laugh silently while the other said, as sternly as possible, “Jack, sit down.  We sit in chairs.”  He’d sit down, get that look again, and stand right back up, and we’d switch.

I’d like to say we’ll get better at it, but I’m kind of afraid we’ll just lose our sense of humor about it.  Is it possible to think it’s funny and still keep a straight face and stern voice?

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