Monkey Man has a sense of humor, and we’ve know that for a long time. Monkey Man also loves to cuddle at night, and frequently says, “Mommy, hold me,” at bedtime. During the last couple of nights, Monkey Man has found a way to combine his humor with his sensitive side.
Last night, Monkey Man did his own version of Gorilla Girl’s mantra — I love you more than chocolate ice cream — by invoking not his favorite, but our favorite — beer. One might interpret his declaration, “I love you more than beer,” to mean, “I love you more than you love beer.” Or, maybe he knows he is being funny — you can hear it in his voice when he makes a joke. Monkey Man’s sense of timing is impeccable, and he uttered this phrase just at the moment that Gorilla Girl was launching into her own version of nighttime secrets when she said, “I love you more than 100 pigs.” For Gorilla Girl, once the declaration moves beyond the realm of food, it is the numbers that matter. Gorilla Girl loves us more than 100 rocks, 100 flowers, and even 100 moons.
Tonight, Monkey Man was particularly inquisitive about the air conditioner vent, the sound of the washing machine, and even how water comes through the pipes into the bathtub. I was groggy, exhausted even, and was struggling to answer, but did my best to explain what I know about plumbing, and heating and cooling systems (not a whole lot, it turns out). Sensing that I didn’t know how to answer his questions about how things work, Monkey Man switched tactics.
“Mommy, are you happy?”
Of course, how could I not be happy, snuggled under the blankets with Monkey Man? Monkey Man answered, “I will protect you from the scary monster, Mommy, here under the tent (the blankets pulled over our heads), and will keep you happy.”
Gulp. Monkey Man has already done his share of protecting me from a whole host of scary monsters. His final words, as he drifted off to sleep, “I am glad you are happy at me, Mommy,” will keep me happy at him always, even when the beer runs out.