Sometimes, I get the feeling that my son is making tremendous progress developing his communications skills. He blurts out long sentences, and we even are starting to have nascent forms of cogent communications. He can go on at excited length in a breathy voice about the trucks that he sees rolling down the street or the slide at the park. It is quite amazing that he is now even able to recount events that have happened to him several hours earlier in sufficient detail that I can understand what he is talking about without having been there myself.
Yet, at other times he seems to slip into a stubborn verbal blockade. His words escape him and he can go hours without uttering anything that has any semblance to anything other than a baby’s babbling. I cannot help but wonder at the epic construction effort that must be underway in his mind, building the complex and vast neural network required to imbue him fully with the gift of communication. It is as if parts of his brain shut down for a while as tiny work crews put up “closed for construction” signs, erect whatever marvelous structure needs to be in place, tear down the scaffolding and turn the power back on to the particular cerebral block and the owners open their shops up for business once again.
His most predictable response to any question at this stage is “blue.” He will use it to answer anything from colours to preferred foods, to numbers, and even friends’ names. He does this while still being able to identify the required items when we ask it of him, so he clearly has not forgotten what everything is, regardless of whether we ask him in English or French. Truly wondrous.
Of course, he may simply be trying to see how much it takes for us to crack. Clever little bugger.