For several months now I have been under the distinct impression that Isaac has been holding out on me.

"At what age do kids usually start talking?" I'd ask a mother who appeared to know what she was doing.

"Oh, about two years old, I guess," was the standard reply.

At two years, Isaac has refused to offer hardly a word, aside from "What's that?" (slurred, which could mean he was really saying: "Whassit?") He says "bye," and waves; "hi," and waves; and "no," to just about everything. He says "yum" when he is enjoying his meal. He understands when I ask him, "Where's your baby?" I can tell, because he immediately goes in search of his little blue elephant (anyone else ever heard of a security elephant?) He catches on quick when I mention the words "outside," or "movie" - two of his favorite things. He knows, from habit I suppose, that in the morning he will get a bottle of milk to drink on the couch, and he may or may not get to watch a Disney movie. He also knows without being told that when I take him outside, he will get to play on the riding mower or in the jeep. He knows that when Tim picks him up at about nine-thirty, it's time for bed; he tries to stall by reaching for me. He knows not to cry if I put him to bed - because it yields no favorable results - but he screams bloody murder when his softy father puts him down. He understands that the bookshelf, the laptops, and the electrical outlets are off limits. He touches them anyway (I find the plastic plugs in my laundry). He can take a shower by himself, distinguish between coloring on paper but not the walls, and put on his own pants and socks.

On the whole, he seems rather advanced for his age. Which is why I was confused about his only minimal use of communication. Today, however, was our first breakthrough:

"Isaac, do you want to go outside?"
Isaac runs to the door.
"Got to put on your shoes," I say, taking them out of the drawer and undfolding his socks.
"What did you say?" In my best astonished voice.
"Did you say SHOES?" Stunned and excited. "Can you say it again? Say shoes again! Say shoes! Shoes!" (Oh god, I'm going to be that mom.)
"Can you say socks?"
"No. Shoes."

And then I knew. I could tell by the matter-of-fact way in which he said "shoes" that he could've been saying it for months, if he'd wanted to.

1 comment:

  1. Is there a chance he was holding out because he knew what a hilarious blog post you would write about it? :D

    I think the lack of enthusiasm for talking must be a boy thing -- Ben's a very similar brand of pill. I'll swear he rolls his eyes at me: sure, Sarah, like I'm gonna TALK when I have perfectly good grunts and hand-gestures. What kind of an Engel is he??

    Boys are odd.


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