We have reached the exciting world of full-term toddlerdom at the MU household. Temper tantrums, a new found independence, and dissention abound. While I’m glad to not be bouncing a cranky 8-month old on one shoulder while singing “My Bonnie” at 3am, the world of the toddler is a force with which to be reckoned.
Of particular enjoyment is the new chatty Kathy that has moved in. As you might have guessed, I love me some talking. I can talk a dress off a church lady. And it seems that my daughter has taken up this same passion. But, unfortunately, about 82.6% of time, I have absolutely no idea what she is saying, and it’s getting a bit taxing on my brain.
At 20-months, I think my daughter has a decent vocabulary. She’ll copy whatever we say *ahem* and then use it at appropriate times. And while I’m excited that she masterfully uses the words “moneys” “bad babies” and “hopper” (grasshopper) quite well, I’m thinking that perhaps a simple “poopies mama” or even “I’m sitting in a big honking crap” would be a better use of her language skills.
I get green with envy when I visit Lucinda’s place – as her nearly 2-year daughter is practically reciting the Gettysburg address (okay, her actual birthdate and twinkle twinkle, but that’s pretty damn good) – and mine? She is repeating the word “ICKIES” about 25 times until we figure out that she wants her STICKERS and all is well again with the world.
Granted my daughter can do a 25-piece puzzle with her eyes closed, but sometimes it gets really frustrating. Take for example the escalating cries for a dance.
Ance? Ance? ANCE? ANCE? ANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNCCCCCCCCCCCEEE?
Look. No matter how loud and emphatic you try to say “dance” - if it’s in French, German, or Toddlerspeak for that matter, it won’t help me get it any better. We even do the "I-have-no-idea-what-you-are-saying-but-I'll-pretend-like-I-do-anyway" nod. Also "Good job, that's right" works pretty well.
Then we do the guilty parents charade game where we try to get them to say it (like that ever helps).
Babytoy. One word. Two syllables. Sounds like?
Or maybe just a good game of 20 questions.
Can you show me what it is? Is it big or small? Is it something to eat? Does it talk? Walk? Sing? Is it in this house? Is it even real?
On the really, really bad days, it’s like playing Mad Gabs. Ever heard of that game? It’s one of those adult party games that either you have to play very sober or very drunk – and either way, by the end of the it, you want to eat your own arm off.
Basically, you get a bunch of unrelated words that when said actually sound like another word or phrase. You read it to your team until they guess it. Simply put, it’s HELL IN A BOX.
Ask Rude Arrive Her. Ask Rude Arrive Her. Ask Rude Arrive Her (repeat about 40 times with various voice inflections).
By the time you figure out it’s "A SCREWDRIVER", you want to beat the person with the game box.
Our version is slightly less fun. Even the most competitive annoying drunk idiot is more entertaining than a screaming toddler.
Neekus. NEEKUS? Nnnnnnnnneeeeeeeeeeeekus. neeKUS. NEEkus. OH SNEAKERS? Right right sneakers. Of course. Who doesn't want to kiss their sneakers goodnight before bed. Totally logical. Thanks for that.
So, that is our daily routine in a nutshell. And I’m better at it than my husband. You can hear the poor guy in the other room trying to appease the savage toddler talker.
At? Do you mean Hat? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO Do you mean Pat? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO Do you mean Cat? UH-HUH. Sounds like a really fucked up Dr. Suess book.
I know this is very typical and I’m trying very hard to suppress my need to consult a speech therapist. And while it is pretty damn frustrating, it is kind of funny. Let’s face it. For all we know, she could be cursing us out right in front of our faces, and all we think is that she really really wants her [d]"uck."
*The first stop on the Tour was teething. Read it here.