On babbling toddlers

My son is reaching the “I love to talk continuously and not let anyone in on the conversation” stage. He loves to try new words out, and has a surprisingly wide range of vocabulary for such a little fellow. His mother and I have about a 70-80% success rate at deciphering his lingo.  At some times, he manages to chain two, three, or even four words together to form a rudimentary sentence. This has greatly contributed to reducing his frustration levels, as he can now more effectively convey his wants and needs.

Our luck drops off tremendously the more he gets excited. If we have the misfortune of waving anything that even remotely resembles chocolate in his general direction, or when he’s in one of his multiple “I want to play outside” moods of the day, his communication degenerates into a series of gibberish gobbledigook that he repeats on an unending loop at an ever-increasing rate. Most recently, he has taken to producing a stream of “Passesay! Passesay! Passesay!” This may be his way of saying “Parce que c’est” (because it is), or something entirely obscure and unknowable to we of the adult kind. What is certain, is that he can go on his single-word tirade for several minutes on end without regard for whether we are actually responding to his need or not.

Have I mentioned his mood swings? He can switch from a happy babbling kid to an utterly devastated, teary-eyed wreck, and back in the blink of an eye. His conversation in these instances sound something like: “”Passesay! Passesay! Passesay! Waaauguahauuuahhahahahhwaaaaaaaaa! Snif! Passesay! Passesay! Passesay!” Sheesh!

It is also neat to hear him try new words out altogether. Sometimes, these are an effort to replicate something we have said earlier in the day. Other times, I think he is an experimental linguist. This evening, he shouted out “Tamura jump!” before hurling himself off of his bed and laughing. Visions of some crazy Japanese extreme sport show immediately came to mind.

Maybe I can make a few bucks off of this kid by turning such inspired ideas into reality. Diapers don’t grow on trees after all!


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