30 Days of Thanks: Day 14

Today I am thankful for…tickle time.

Peanut’s gotten pretty stubborn lately – no big surprise. He is two, after all. Part of my job, apparently, is to creatively make him think that all things he refuses to do are really his idea so he does what mommy wants anyway. Don’t want to get dressed? Pick something with zippers so he can do it himself (he’s really into zippers right now). Don’t want to put a jacket on to go to the park? Let him pick out an extra shirt and sweater instead. Don’t want to wash hands before dinner? Pull out the stool and ask him to show the stuffed animal of the day how to do it.

Lately, he’s been trying to persuade extra stories (beyond the two he is guaranteed) before nap time. I start moving into song time and he starts to protest, whine, struggle. Enter, the tickle! I insert the word tickle randomly into his favorite songs (“Twinkle, twinkle TICKLE star…”) accompanied by a well-placed tickle and he gets to giggling to the point of full-on belly laughs. Not only does it distract him from the stories, but allows us to share in a pure moment. A moment of laughter. A moment of smiles. A moment of real happiness. A moment I treasure. A moment I envision telling peanut about while I hold his new son or daughter decades from now.

So, am I glad that peanut’s in the stubborn two-year-old stage? Not particularly. But without it, we might not have discovered the joy of tickle time.

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