Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Da-da De-ja-vu.

Either we are doing something wrong or we have genetic issues. It has to be one of the two.

The background:
When Dale was 10 or 11 months old, he pointed to a picture of himself on the wall and said "Day-da".
Baby! Yes!

I wrote it in his baby book as his first word.

And then he said, "da-da"
Yes, Daddy!
Word number 2!

And then word number three was another variation of 2 syllables, both begining with the letter D.
As was word number 4.
And numbers 5, 6, & 7.

Pretty soon just about everything was "da-da". It was obvious he wasn't going to be much of a talker. Thankfully we were also learning baby signs which eased frustrations on both sides.

By the time his 2nd birthday rolled around Dale communicated with over 50 signs and sound effects, some we had taught him and some he'd made up on his own.

2 months later, we arranged for speech therapy. Two ladies came to the house to evaluate Dale. They were amazed and impressed with his cognitive abilities, which were above his age level. But they whole-heartedly agreed his speech was not where it should be.

Within a few weeks of begining his once-a-week sessions we were amazed at the progress he was making. Soon he was calling me "Mama" instead of "Ba-ba", asking for "more" instead of his sing-song whiney sound, and saying "train" instead of imitating a train whistle.

After 5 months, the speech therapist said he was talking better than any of her other students (and had been for several weeks) and there wasn't much else she could do for him, or us. In the end, it was decided there was no reason physically, enivironmentally, developmentally or any other "ally" to explain why Dale hadn't learned to talk like any other kid. It was just a fluke.

Or was it?

Fast forward a couple of years.

You want to guess what 16 month old Alan says for almost everything?



We had such high hopes.

Daddy? "da-da"
Dale? "da-da"
Mama? "da-da"
book, eat, go, bath, shoe, night-night, computer, outside, & any other word a 16-month-old might need? "da-da"

There is at least one interesting variation. Train = "go-go". That's fun. Random, but fun.
And we've got him saying something that sounds a lot like "chicken". Because 'chicken' is such an important word in toddller's vocabulary.

Here's the thing: based on all research and common sense, we are doing everything "right". We read to our kids, even as babies. We talk to them, sing to them, narrate our day, limit tv time, and get down and play with them.

So you know what that leaves.


But not mine, thankyouverymuch.

Nope. It's got to be the Buffalo genes.

Seriously though.... does anybody have any idea what is up with these kids o'mine?

After all we've been through it really truly is a minor thing. But it certainly is an odd, curious little thing.


Melissa said...

my 5-year-old didnt talk until he was 2 1/2. Very frustrating. No medical reason why, just one day he started talking. My 1 1/2 year old only says a handful of words but its still better than her brother did!

Shannon said...

Mine all talked at different times. My 6 year old is still hard to understand much of the time, but he's come a long way. We just tell him to talk slowly and think about what he's saying and he's come leaps and bounds from where he was. I think they put the pressure on us parents to get our kids talking early just so they can create jobs for speech therepy before kids really need it. Seriously. Most kids learn to speak very well before they hit college only to perfect the art of mumbling. ;)

Linda said...

For awhile, all my granddaughter said was "Baba" for everything. Not only was her bottle a baba (and still is, much to my horror; she's 27 months old now! But I keep my mouth shut!)but Big Bird, and basketball, and Sponge Bob were baba, too. She outgrew it, though, as I'm sure Alan will, too.

My son had to go to speech therapy for several years after he started school and they did a great job so that by the time he was in 3rd grade, he was fine.

Again, I really enjoy your well-written blog!