Monday, May 16, 2011


For the past few weeks, Ryan’s vocabulary has been absolutely exploding. He picks up a new word or two almost every single day. Of course, a few of those words are merely mimicking something he hears someone say, but with no understanding of the meaning. For example, we tried to get him to say “thank you” the other day and got something that sounded vaguely like “takoooooo”, but he didn’t repeat it and he didn’t say it in the right context. But some words he grabs onto and relishes and uses every chance he gets. When I see him begin to play with his food instead of eating it, I often ask him, “Are you done?” and now he’s taken to announcing “Done!” whenever he’s finished with his dinner, or when his sippy cup is empty, or even when he’s ready to get out of his high chair. He obviously understands what “done” means. But my favorite new use-it-all-the-time word that he’s picked up is “wow!”.

I’m not always sure exactly what he’s referring to, but he seems to understand that “wow” means you’re looking at something new, or interesting, or different. And he often repeats it many times in succession, often with increasing (or at least varying) intensity or inflection. “Wow. Woooowwwww. Wow! WOOOWWWW!” In the morning, when he wakes up, we often hear a few quiet wows, apparently as he contemplates the excitement and adventures of the new day. Saturday night, we were visiting friends in New York and stayed in a hotel room with Ryan’s porta-crib beside our bed, and we woke at 3:45 am to the sound of a small voice excitedly (if somewhat drowsily) exclaiming, “Wow. Wow. WOW. Wow! Wooooooowwwwwww.” I’m not certain if he was even truly awake or not, but I can only assume he had just had an amazing dream.

The speed with which his vocabulary is growing is incredible to me, and the fact that the vast majority of his words are clearly understandable and used in the right context makes me shake my head in wonderment. That little brain is absorbing and learning at a rate that is just astonishing. His whole world is opening up as he learns to talk about it, to express his thoughts to the rest of the world, and to communicate with other people.


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