Monday, October 4, 2010


Zoe really needs to learn how to speak English. She's at that toddler phase where she does not yet speak, so she compensates with "shriek." From the moment she wakes up, it's one loud shout/giggle/shriek-athon until she passes out for nap time.

Last week, she woke up and I thought I heard her shouting something from the basement. At first I thought it was Jed, but no it was definitely her. So then I figured I was just imagining the words. But then she did it again the next morning, and I definitely heard it after the nap. Up the basement stairs my baby girl was shouting:


So charming. Not. What ever happened to "Mama" or something heart-wrenchingly sweet and memorable? What's with the 15 month teenager? So far, this is what we know, in English, from the mind of Zoe.

1) "Wow!" She uses it in perfect context every time.

2) "Mo mo mo mo mo." After many attempts to teach her sign language at the dinner table, and thus preserve the hearing of the rest of the family, she finally learned how to say (not sign) "More," generally repeated unceasingly at approximately 100 decibels until her mouth is stuffed sufficiently full that you can't hear it any more.

3) "Na na!" This is a word-shriek used when we refuse to share our bananas with her because they upset her belly. Not happy.

4) "No no no NO!" She picked this one up last week while we were at the grocery store. Always accompanied by flails of anger and several innocent objects thrown mercilessly to the floor.

To be fair, the "Hey Mom" and "No no no no no no!" were introduced the same day last week, and it was a bit of a blow to my mothering aspirations. She has a mouthful of teeth coming in and much of the day lately she careens around the house purposefully looking for things to be annoyed at, and thus have an excuse to shriek in anger. Fortunately that afternoon we were out working quietly in the yard (and by "quietly," of course, I mean "far enough apart and in the open air so the shrieks were barely noticeable,") and she wandered over to the garden. I heard a gentle little voice behind me utter, "Mama. Mama!" I turned around and there was my darling sweetheart holding a white feather and waving it proudly at me. "Mama!" I ran over and scooped her up and showered her with kisses, thanking her for that small token of the darling, beloved little girl I know she is inside.


Carrie said...

Oh, how I wish they'd show that side more often. Eli is currently a devil child for all intents and purposes. I think his days lately have been one LONG time out.

T said...

Hunter doesn't shriek so much as grunt. He only shrieks when he runs. They go hand in hand.