Scotty was with me, of course, and we went a little early to play at the playground nearby. Another little girl joined us and she was sweet as could be. She and Scotty had a good time playing with his cars, and they were giggling and laughing together. She was a little younger, probably about 18 months, and very cute.
At one point, her aunt (we had been chatting so I knew everyone's relations) put her on one of those rock-back-and-forth things. This one happened to be shaped like a little horse, and after a few rocks, the little girl got too close to the front of the equipment. She banged her tiny little head into the horse's mane and her lip started gushing blood. She began to wail.
Scotty fell silent during this and watched her with big, concerned eyes. I've been joking that he's going to grow up to be a medic or firefighter or doctor (pleasepleaseplease), mainly because he has such a serious, thoughtful demeanor. He loves his little doctor's kit at home, we administer shots to his stuffed animals every day, and he's very concerned about his mother's well-being ("Momb, sit down. Take your vitamins. Here, vitamin. Open mouth. [Vitamin inserted into my mouth] There, there. Very good [gentle pat on knee]."
So as the little girl cried and the aunt hugged her (and tried to control the bleeding), I knelt down to Scotty's level and asked him, "What do we say when someone is crying?" We had been practicing all week, usually with Brian fake-crying on the couch, and Scotty would come over and offer an empathetic pat on the arm and say, "There, there. You're okay."
I watched Scotty think for a second, and then he moved towards the girl. He briefly scooped up some sand, held it out to her and said,
"Here. Rub some dirt on it."
Which is exactly what Brian tells Scott whenever he falls down.
Total. Parental. Mortification.
Looks like I'll be the one teaching the child about appropriate empathetic responses going forward.
(we all laughed, but I could not believe Scotty said that to her. He said it sweetly, I'll give him that, but oh. my. god. Children. No...husbands! Darn husbands!)
Totally as an aside, check out this photo of Scotty during my assessment. He loved Boot Camp, and he loved Kerry, the trainer. While we did our 1/2 mile run, they stood by a tree and studied the ants together.
Looks like a future Boot Camper.