Well tonight Hazel told me her first joke.
Ginger's in a very fussy, whiney stage right now so by the end of the day my nerves are raw and I snap at any little thing either one does. I gave them a late dinner and Ginger's shrieking was so unbearable that I left Hazel at the table to put Ginger to bed. Partway through the kicking, fighting, crying process I heard Hazel calling from the kitchen, "Mommy, I need more water!" over and over. Deep breaths.
Once Ginger was down I went back to the kitchen where Hazel was waiting, admittedly very patiently for a 2.5 year old. I refilled her drink and sat down to hopefully squeeze in a few quiet, quality moments with her. As she ate, my mind wandered, so I was totally surprised to hear her say quite clearly:
Knock, knock? Where did she learn a knock knock joke?
Being so late in the day it took my mind a few seconds delay to put it together. But then I realized the joke - it's from a Little Bear episode we've seen 500 times.
I'd been strung so tight I thought I'd snap. I mean I was teetering on the brink of insanity after the day and week I've had. And with one horrible knock-knock joke and a proud little smile, my toddler managed to melt my stress away in about 5 seconds, and it came pouring out my eyes. I laughed and cried so hard I couldn't talk, and I hugged her as tight as I could. She proceeded to retell the joke no less than 10 times, and one last time right before bed.
They say in comedy, timing is everything.
And I would have to agree.