Monday, August 24, 2015

The Power of the Jenna Jab

She had her first birthday this past week. She  is less than two feet tall and weighs less than twenty-five pounds. Her vocabulary is limited to three or four words amongst many undecipherable sounds. However, this little stick of dynamite gets almost anything she wants and is able to get almost anywhere she wants to go with one repeated syllable accompanied by a pointing finger and an arm bent and straightened repeatedly. This gesture combined with, “Eh, eh, eh” will get the job done. I call it the Jenna Jab.

Did I mention there are adorable dimples in both cheeks, though one very much more prominent than the other, and a smile that could melt what’s left of the polar ice caps? Yes, the combination of these things mean that Jenna rules the world she inhabits. If you are one fortunate enough to have this little person waddle toward you with both arms stretched straight up in the air making the “eh, eh, eh” sound--which means she wants you, yes, you, to pick her up, and you do—from there on you are a slave. Wherever the Jenna jab points you will go and whatever the jab points to you will give her, as long as it is safe, of course. Trust me. These are the laws of nature in Gramasylum. As gravity insists “what goes up, must come down,” in Gramasylum “what and where Jenna jabs, Jenna gets and goes!” It’s life on this side of certifiable grama craziness.

There is only one obstacle currently in the way of her absolute rule—her three-year-old brother Kasen. He is not taken with the Jenna Jab. He regularly and consistently ignores it.  And, he goes further. He quickly interprets what it is she wants and is big enough and quick enough to get it before she can and keep whatever it is out of her grasp. Until a smitten parent or grandparent attends.  It would appear that the Creator,  either to test parental negotiation skills, or to ensure regular interaction, created a sort of sibling relational loop.  Younger siblings idolize their older siblings and want whatever they have,  while at the same time older siblings desire to teach younger siblings that might makes right and that size matters.   Jenna could jab her arm off and Kasen’s desire to teach would not be diminished. Unless, of course some parental negotiator is watching, which is almost all the time, and then it takes a little longer, but the Jenna Jab eventually triumphs. After all, she is little and does not understand (yah, right!) and he is the big boy who will teach her how to share by sharing. Wait. Doesn’t that mean Jenna always gets what she wants? Is that sharing? So the obstacle to her absolute rule, her brother, is also subject to the Jenna Jab, even if delayed and involuntarily.

Now, this might sound like Gramasylum allows partiality. The short view would seem so. The longer view reveals otherwise. So just in case, Kasen finds this blog in the future when he is reading about his crazy grama Cece, I want him to know he once had the place of rule and reign that Jenna now holds. Of course, we did not call it the Jenna Jab.  And, as I recall Kasen’s control of the world extended into days with more vocabulary.  He too used his arm. But it was a steady and firm directional gesture accompanied by the word “hefway.”  Kasen would point in a certain direction and say, “Hefway,” and off we would go. I took him wherever “hefway” was.  Gramasylum evolves and changes, and they may take turns, but the little people always rule. It’s crazy, and I  love it!

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