Fourteen months old and Scrip is starting to understand more of our language, which is great. But she’s also starting to reply in her own, sometimes familiar but mostly baffling, language. My husband and I find ourselves deciphering constantly – ‘did she mean cat?’ ‘I think that was “more”‘ ‘I think she’s asking for some of your toast’ and so on.
There are some words the three of us all seem to agree on, but also some that we were very clear on before – such as her first ever word, bubble – that now seem to have morphed into something quite different. She’ll still point at the bottle excitedly, and mimic blowing the bubbles, but she’s decided to change the word.
I’m dutifully repeating things when I think I know what Scrip means, as I’m told to in my email updates (‘ask your toddler if she means she wants some “water” as you clearly point to the glass’), so hopefully eventually she’ll repeat something similar after me. At the moment she’ll happily answer in her own language, with her favourite words being anything that starts with ‘b’. Even ‘apple’ and ‘open’ seem to work quite nicely with bs in the middle instead of ps.
I now realise how many times I’ve deferred to parents in the past when their toddlers said something apparently indistinguishable – and how many times they must have been almost as in the dark as me.
I’m sure it will get easier as Scrip gets older and realises we have to meet somewhere in the middle with language. In the meantime, hopefully it won’t get too frustrating for either of us as I’m constantly offering her water when what she’d really like is to play catch.