A few days ago I was carrying Zaffron, who is 1 1/2 years old, to the bedroom to change her diaper. As we turned the corner into her room, she bit me on the shoulder. I was astonished. She had never done that before. I was also very mad.
I put her on the changing table and took the opportunity to lecture her a bit as I changed her diaper. “We don’t bite our mommies,” I scolded.
She stared at me. Silent.
“We don’t bite our friends.” She continued to stare. She blinked which I took to mean, “please continue, Mother,” so I did, with “We only bite food, Zaffron. Do you understand?”
She opened her mouth wide in response and bared her teeth. Deliberately and ever-so-slowly, she closed her mouth on my arm… gently pressing her teeth into my skin. She used just enough pressure to let me know that she knew exactly what she was doing but still too little pressure to qualify as actual biting. She cocked an eyebrow and puased — I think for effect, because I was stunned into silence, afraid to move a muscle. Zaffron pulled away, smiled, pointed her thin little finger at my arm and said, “Apple?”
My baby’s first joke.