Being a parent is many things that begin with “e” — exhilarating, exhausting, enlightening… And let’s not forget entertaining. One of the most entertaining aspects of conversing with my 4-year-old son, J-Man, is the non sequiturs. He can throw out a non sequitur without missing a beat, and leave me feeling like somehow I am the one missing something. Like Mom, for real, keep up. I love to try to figure out how he is jumping from one topic to another in his head. But sometimes I have to admit, I got nothin’.
Take, for example, this conversation on the way home from school the other day:
Porridge? Really? We went from birthdays to porridge? I can see how we would go from birthdays to maybe talking about parties, cake, or toys. But porridge?
So now the question is, how do I respond? I’ve tried the befuddled approach, but he seems to think that means I have a temporary loss of hearing or briefly forgot how to speak English.
I have also tried to get him to justify or explain the sudden turn in conversation. At this point, he looks at me like he’d like to trade me in. It’s like he’s completely forgotten the first part of the conversation even happened.
So really, my only option is to pretend like it makes perfect sense and just follow the conversation where he leads it.
At which point, he does.