I never thought myself much of a baby/little kid person until my nephew was born a bit more than two years ago. I remember being at the hospital, looking at this baby and overwhelmed by the fact that he was my nephew. He fell asleep in my arms the first time I held him. Two years and a few hundred pictures of Raza later, he has grown into quite the cute kid.
And now, we all have to deal with his ‘tude.
Yesterday, I spent more time with Raza than I had in a while and discovered a few things that seemed to have come up just recently: He doesn’t like being called “baby” and he really does not like being laughed at, two things that didn’t seem to be a problem just a few weeks ago for his Bushra Khala (Aunt Bushra) to do.
So yesterday he and my sister were over at our place and I was hanging out with Raza when he picked up something off the floor. Realizing he was going to stick it in his mouth at some point, I asked for it. He gave it to me but then asked for it back soon after. I pretended not to have it and he took my hand and checked it thoroughly. He asked me where it was and I feigned ignorance.
“I don’t know,” I told him, shrugging my shoulders. He then looked at me with a knowing smile, and said, “Bushra Khala use magic?”
I couldn’t help it, I laughed. Then something completely unexpected happened: he took offense. His brow furrowed and he walked away from me towards my sister. He pointed a finger at me and said “baby!” as an insult and proceeded to seek comfort with my sister. I apologized but he continued to ignore me and after following him around for a while I told him that every time he does something and apologizes, I accept the apology right away. And yet, he doesn’t accept my apology? (I had fake tears in my eyes at this point). He looked at me, said “sorry” and gave me a hug.
All was well.
I made a mental note that he can now tell when I’m mocking him.
A while later, my sister said something about bubbles so I chipped in with a “Bubbles is a character in The Wire”. Raza comes up to me and says “Bushra Khala, can you show me the bubbles in the water?” It was obvious he misheard me. So I laughed.
It took me a while to get back in his good graces again.