My first son, who is now 5 years old, inherited my gift of gab. He used sign language as soon as physically possible, said his 1st real word (“duck”) around 12 months old, had a ton of partial words by 15 months old, and by 18 months old, could pretty much say anything he wished.
Those who’ve met him will confirm that he is a talker. A BIG talker. One of his nightly wind-down rituals is “chat time,” which he created. Instead of watching TV or playing a game, he prefers to spend some time each night having a discussion of the topic of his choice with one of his parents over a snack. These topics tend to revolve around science, engineering or vehicles, with an emphasis on learning every itty bitty little detail possible on the selected subject.
The boy loves conversation, and as I watch old home videos of when he and I were first at home together, it’s no wonder. In these home movies, I am talking constantly…non-stop…to my baby. I couldn’t downshift my loquacious ways, so it’s no wonder that he can’t either.
As he has grown older and savvier, one of the byproducts of all this talk is that he has developed the ability to mirror my own speech patterns. He is especially good at framing his concerns in my style when most upset. “Mom…I am really mad, and I’m going to tell you why. One, you wouldn’t let me have that toy. Two, you kept interrupting me when I was upset and crying about it. Three….” …and so on.
Once when I asked him to stop kicking the window, his response was, “I’m waiting for a ‘please’.” It’s truly fascinating to learn about your own way of speaking through what your children say back to you.
In addition to using my own words against me, he has come up with some real zingers over his first 5 years. What I mean is that he has produced some belly laugh inducing comebacks delivered with superb comedic timing. Here, I list for you the top 5 best comebacks my kid has said to me thus far:
#5) Once when we were outside, I was trying desperately to open a particularly tricky package of graham crackers, to the point of pulling so hard I thought I would spray them across the driveway. I said to my son, “Almost there.” My son, while shaking his head, said to me, “Mom, I sure hope you know what you’re doing.”
#4) Helping my son prepare to leave for preschool one morning, I was down on my knees adjusting his coat. I asked him if he was ready to go. He said in a matter of fact tone, “Mom, I’m going to go to school today, and I am going to go berserk.” In unison, my husband and I responded, “Please don’t.” (For the record, he lived up to his statement and then some that day).
#3) We had been coming back from a fun but exhausting sledding trip, and all my husband and I wanted was a little down time to listen to music and look at the snowy mountains on our drive home. My son could not stop jabbering away and asking questions. When we asked if we could just have a few moments of silence, his reply to us was, “Give me a break, guys. Sometimes I just need to talk to myself.”
#2) When our second son was clearly on the verge of crawling, my older son and I had the following exchange:
Son: “The baby is going to crawl soon.”
Me: “Yes. You are going to have to do a better job of putting away your toys so he can’t get at them.”
Son: “Or we can create a baby exhibit.”
Me: ”A what?”
Son : ” We can gate him in his room and watch him from the other side.”
#1) My son’s best comeback was more of a total verbal set up that I walked into. We were eating dinner one night, and I was exhausted and not really engaged in the conversation.
Son: “Mom, why are avocados green?”
Me: “I don’t know. I guess that’s just how nature made them.”
Son: “No. Actually, it’s because you only see the green light waves reflecting off of them.”
I don’t want to be so trite as to say kids say the darndest things, but the truth is that kids do say the darndest things! They have that amazing ability to make you laugh, even when you are trying desperately to be stern. They engage you when you are least expecting it. And, they hold up a verbal mirror that lets you see just how you really do sound.
I love that my son is super talkative, even though he puts my endurance for conversation to the test (and that’s saying something… believe me). I look forward to many more years of “chat times”, debates, conversation winning comebacks, and hilarity.
What are some of the best comebacks your little ones have lobbed at you? What things have you learned about your own way of speaking through what your children have said?
This has been an original post to World Moms Blog by Tara B. of Washington (State) USA.
Photo credit to the author.