motherhood, stray thoughts
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Language development: 22 months

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A significant milestone: the Pip-Pop can tell on his big brother. One morning last week, he ran into the kitchen crying, his feet thundering on the wooden floors. I crouched down, taking him in my arms and perching him on my thigh.

‘What’s the matter, Pops?’

‘Ra-Ra hit yooooo.’

‘Did Ra-Ra hit you, Popsy?’

‘Yes!’ He nodded his head and smiled. And, just like that, he turned and ran back to his brother.

He’s on that cusp — words clustering into almost-sentences. His ability to tell us things is growing fast. ‘Bit more, Da-da!’ he cries, pointing to his empty bowl. ‘Bit more paa-staa!’ He’s scrupulous about his end consonants — often sounding them a beat late: ‘Ladybir– –d got spo– –ts.’ We frequently hear, ‘Popsy do it!’ And, my heartmelting favourite: ‘Mum-ma help yooooo,’ said as he takes me by the hand and leads me off to whatever he has decided I need to do.

Although our older two have had many nicknames — & plenty are still in circulation — he’s the first to exclusively refer to himself by one of them. If you ask him his ‘big’ name he just says ‘Popsy In–i–go [Indigo]’ & his family name. It’s so sweet, especially as I know he won’t be introducing himself as Popsy when he’s fifteen. I still remember the day the Moose woke up and said, ‘I’m not Ra-Ra, I’m R–!’ And continued saying it, until we all finally remembered. I love the fact that he makes an exception for his little brother, who also hit on Ra-Ra as an approximation of R’s real name. And — just in case anyone is worrying about poor Popsy — he answers to his ‘big’ name, even if he doesn’t say it.

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