The Baby seems to have realised early that, as the third child, there is little point in making any effort at all; she will always have her older siblings to do things for her, and in any event, what’s the point in trying if no one notices – let alone acknowledges – your efforts?
At least this is what I assume is behind her reluctance to display anything close to a age-appropriate development. At the grand old age of 16 months, she is still shuffling along on her bottom, one gimp-leg stuck out to the side , and taking the occasional step – just to tease us – before plonking back down again and trundling off. And as for her speech – I got excited a few months ago when she asked for “MORE!” something or other, but, well, that was about it. Since then “MORE!” (actually “MU-UH!”) comprises almost her entire vocabulary. It’s a useful word, with many meanings: GIVE ME FOOD; WHERE ARE YOU, MOTHER?; I’VE DROPPED MY TEDDY; and, the ever-popular – GIVE ME WHAT THEY HAVE, NOW.
To this linguistic inventory, we can add the Boy and the Girl’s “names” – Adda and Yaya, respectively – and the ever amusing “Ooof” :
Ooof: Thought to derive from “Woof”, refers to any non-human animate (or potentially animate, or perceived to be animate) object, such as a dog,a cat, a teddy, a random wig in a shop window, or a large furry spider scuttling across a floor.
So you can imagine my delight when, on leaving the shower au naturel yesterday, the Baby looked up at me, grinned, and gleefully shouted “Ooof Ooof!”.
And so, to the list of the many joys of parenting, I can now add Humiliation by a 1 year old.