Like most parents, Kate and I both worry about when Dylan is going to reach the various important developmental stages that will eventually see him complete his transformation from baby to little boy. It’s probably irrational to do so, but it has to be said that most baby books have a lot to answer for with what are basically sweeping generalisations.
I remember how much we fretted about when he was going to take his first steps. We seemed to take it in turns at being the worrier, saying something to the effect of “But the book says he should have been walking over a month ago!” only for the other to jump in with the sound point that children develop at their own pace. And develop he did. In fact, he’s gone a fair bit further and developed quite a fast pace; it can be tricky keeping up with him now! But even with the reassurance of knowing that kids learn stuff in their own time, nothing beats seeing the signs that a monumental achievement may well be on the horizon. Yes, it looks like Dylan is getting closer and closer to speaking.
We already know that he understands a lot of different words and phrases and that he can differentiate between similar sounding ones – he’s been able to for quite a while, in fact. For example, ‘goodbye’ and ‘good boy’ can sound pretty much the same to anyone. We know he can hear the difference between them though – the former earns you a wave, while he’ll applaud himself for the latter. And why not eh?! He seems to have a good grasp of sound too and has, on occasion, started repeating what we say in noise form. I know he is doing this as the number of sylables are always spot on, as is the intonation. Clever boy!
He also seems to be starting to embrace the parrot-fashion way of learning – and not just with words either… I’m asthmatic and have to take an inhaler as and when I need it. Dylan, the cheeky little scamp, has started imitating my breathing while putting his hand to his mouth as if using one of his own! Another endearing little habit he has acquired of late is reacting to pictures of animals with impressions of them. Obviously, making monkey noises comes as second nature to him, but he also does quite a passable frog and snake.
So although the books would have us believe that we ought to be tearing our hair out and looking for the number of a decent speech therapist, I’m pretty relaxed about it. He’ll start talking our legs off soon enough and is showing plenty of signs that he’s going to be as verbose as his old man. Time to enjoy the peace while it lasts, methinks!