“Did you wash your hands?” I begin, looking inquisitively at Gussie resting in his bed. He smiles. His body wriggles under the blankets with excitement. He knows what comes next. He raises his hand to me. I grab it with both hands, not without recognizing its smallness in my own, and snuggle it against my nose. I close my eyes, scrunch up my face, and make several exaggerated sniffs.
“Well,” I say. I pause and take in the precious look of wonder on his face. “This one is a little bit handy!”
Gussie erupts in squeals of laughter. His blankets shift as his body gives into the joy of simple giddiness.
“What about this one?” he sighs with continuous laughter. “Is it handy?” I squish his hand against my nose. I sniff in all the nooks and crannies, tickling him. More laughter leaves his body and infuses the small space around us. Gussie can’t wait, “Mommy! Which one is handier?”
I tilt my head to the side, furrow my brow, and give him a discerning look. I wait.
“Mommy! Which one?”
“Hmmm… this one is handy, but the other one is much handier.”
“Are you sure?” his eyes widen.
“Do it again!” he squeals.