0-6 months: He made a noise that wasn't crying! Hooray!!
6-9 months: He's babbling! This is great! I think he said, "Da-da!"
9-12 months: Omigosh! Real words! He said "Ball!" And "dog"! That is so cute! Did we get that on video?
12-16 months: Wow, he was saying a whole bunch of stuff like two months ago, and now the kid has gone silent. Where is that ASD checklist again?
16-22 months: Oh, we're fine. He's chattering away again. I think all of that physical activity took away from language development. Now he's putting together one and two word sentences. This is the greatest!
22-26 months: He's just a little chatterbox! What a love! Everything that comes out of his mouth is adorable. He's up to three and four - and beyond - word sentences! Amazing!
26+ months: Is this kid ever going to shut up? Oh my god. And how in the world did he become so opinionated? And bossy? Did he really just tell me to sit down? I'm the parent here!
As you might guess, we are at 26+ months.
Scotty has turned into something of a small dictator.
He is ruling this family with a tiny, iron fist. Brian and I are quickly learning that if Scotty isn't happy, ain't nobody happy. And it's about the smallest stuff, too. Like lunch yesterday. I asked him if he wanted cheese. He said, "Otay." (so adorable). I then went to the fridge and got him a wheel of Babybel cheese. He saw me, waved his hand with authority, and said, "No. String cheese."
I'm sure I blanched for a moment before replying, "Uh...sorry sweetie. We don't have any string cheese." I was just at Costco! How did I forget the string cheese?! Curses! The child will be unhappy! Use distraction. "Have a wheel of cheese instead."
He pounded his fists on the table. "No wheel cheese! No wheel! String cheese! STRING CHEESE!"
Had it been in his vocab, I half expected him to say, "Off with her head!"
Aside from having very strong opinions about cheese, Scotty also likes to act as my doctor. Every morning, he tells me to sit on the bed ("Sit down, Momb," as he pats the blanket) and take my vitamins. He likes to pull each container out one by one, demand I open them, and then set the pill on the dresser. He then examines the vitamin before shoving it in my mouth yelling, "Take vitamin, Momb. TAKE VITAMIN!" This goes on for like, twenty minutes, until I'm on B-6 overload. It's like have a pint-size physician. A very, very bossy one. And I'm sure I have the most expensive urine in all of Las Vegas.
His demands aren't for me alone, thankfully. Yesterday, he barked at his stuffed doggie. Then held the dog at eye level and reprimanded him, saying, "Indoor voice, Doggie. INDOOR VOICE!"
Or my personal favorite, which happened at Costco yesterday (yes, the same visit where I did not purchase any string cheese). I was fishing in my wallet for the Costco card, which had wedged itself in the farthest corner. My dalliances were holding up the line to enter the store and Scotty took one look at me and then the line, and then exclaimed very loudly, "Oh for goodness' sake, Momb!"
Everyone laughed. Except me.
Toddlers are funny. It's like living with a combination of a parrot, raccoon, and some kind of tropical storm all at once. Your house is never clean. Your words come back to haunt you. You never know when the next Category 5 storm will hit.
I think that's why God made 'em cute.
Thank goodness for that.