Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The development stage we have been waiting for

For myself and I think I can speak for Jean-Louis as well, life became more enjoyable with our toddler when he started to recognize and call us mama and dada. This didn't really start to happen until about a month ago. I remember people used to tell us how wonderful it was to have their child call them mama or dada when their child first sees them. Not only does Tristan call us by mama and dada, he also runs to greet us with a hug and some times a kiss. This was one of the moments I have been waiting for.

In the past month or so, it seemed like Tristan's vocabulary and understanding had exploded. As a result, he is such a joy to be around. He tries to repeat what we say, even though he can't pronounce it perfectly. At the same time, we are still learning more new signs and he is picking them up quickly. He would sign and try to say the word at the same time.

Playing with him is more fun. He would draw on his etch-and-sketch and then he would sign squirrel. He shows it to me, then if daddy is around, he would run to show it to daddy and tell him that he just drew a squirrel. Then he would do the same thing again, with fish :) After that, he would go back to squirrel and so forth. Yes, he loves to brag and show off!

Here is his drawing of a squirrel (or squirrels? - you decide!) :)

Tristan has enough language to tell us what he wants most of the time. For instance, if he wants to eat bread because he heard one of us say it, he would sign bread and then say pain (French for bread). If he is hungry, he would sign it. When he had a stomach flu, I didn't feed him much and all day long he would sign hungry to me. It was sad to see really :( This next one I really like. When he is stuck or can't do something, he will sign help and say elp or up because he can't pronounce it properly. He can also understand what we are telling him. For instance, when I am about to take his picture, I point and tell him to go over there so I can take his picture. Some times he will do exactly what I say and turn towards me. Then I tell him to say cheese and he says tease. These are just a few examples.

I imagine it could be very frustrating for the baby and parent if there wasn't any communication. The baby wants to tell the parent something but the parent can't understand and can only make guesses. We were like that until Tristan started to sign back at us at 9 months. That's not to say we still don't wonder what he is trying to tell us some times. He is 19 months now and we are so thankful we learned baby sign. It's fun to do and we even sing and sign to the song, "The Wheels on the Bus." We started singing this song about 2 weeks ago and now Tristan even knows the song. Well, he can't sing it but he knows what the next verse is and kind of prompts us with the sign before it comes on. As a parent, I find it so remarkable!

It's not all red roses though. Is that the saying? Well, he is a toddler and he does throw tantrums and some times he'll do it for no apparent reason. He can also create a huge menace if you let him and he often won't listen to your "no's" anymore. However, I like to think that most of the time he is a sweet and fun toddler :) Throughout the day, we give each other kisses and hugs. Some times when I would put my face near his face, he would lean over and kiss me. Just like that. I think when your child starts to show this sort of affection towards you, it is the most wonderful feeling. It makes parenting all the worth while. It is as though he is finally able to return our love. If it hasn't happened to you yet, wait for it. It's just amazing :)


Anonymous said...

Those language explosions are the best!

harriet glynn said...

So cute! I love his outfits. I simply cannot imagine Theo speaking.

But he does run to me and put his arms around my neck and cling really tight. I LOVE THAT!

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