At 8-months-old, Maddie has yet to speak a single sentence – but this morning she decided to unveil a new form of communication with her grandmother. It’s raw, guttural and sounds like the baby is roughly clearing her throat. But this is her new chosen mode of communication to share with her grandmother aka MiMi.
Although this language is a little rough around the edges and is a little bizarre, it is most certainly laced with affection. MiMi props Maddie up on her leg and starts speaking to her. Suddenly these terrifically forceful grunts/throat-clearing noises erupt from somewhere deep within the baby.
We have never seen Maddie so adamant to be heard and understood. This phenomenon took shape during the course of the day where Maddie got to hang out not only with her grandparents, but two of her great-grandparents as well. The house was blessed with several family members and Maddie batted her eyes and happily interacted with all of them.
But once she was back with MiMi, the Planet of the Apes noises started all over again. It’s obvious that many of us are unknowingly encouraging this behavior. And no one is guiltier of it than I am. It is nearly impossible not to be entertained by such a sweet and adorable little girl that is sounding off like a rabid junkyard dog straining at the leash.
Maddie has a very keen eye for things that direct attention towards her. It is definitely something for us to keep in mind as the baby becomes more and more advanced.
What we really hope is that she doesn’t decide to communicate with everyone with this roughshod little language of hers. Trust me when I say the general public is not ready for it. We are hoping that over a short period of time that these verbal eruptions might smooth out a bit and become a bit more gregarious.
Maddie’s grandparents were ready to get out of Dodge this morning after the baby serenaded them with mournful cries deep into night and beyond. You could see the vapor trail from space as Maddie’s grandparents high-tailed it out of New Jersey bright and early this morning. Their rig disappeared into a huge plume of smoke before the baby had a chance to react.
During the night, Maddie struck early and often. This was an effort to properly demonstrate to her parents how difficult it was to sleep with her new headband on. Every hour or so, the tiny town crier let the household have it with both barrels. The windows shook, dishes tumbled out of the cabinets and a few sonic booms were heard across the Hudson River each time my little girl let loose.
Rocking and humming the baby to sleep is still my most effective weapon, but it is now only working for the initial sleep startup sequence. Last night, I scored a 90-minute sleep session and two 60-minute short-but-sweet catnaps. Not nearly enough for Maddie and certainly a little tough on those trying to sleep in our humble abode.
The craniologist (if there is such a thing) told us that there might be some nighttime backlash from the headband. (Do ya think?) The poor grandparents got a front row seat to Maddie’s madcap antics through out the night.
Anytime they tried to contemplate an escape, Maddie was onto them. Her constant demand for crib liberation banished any thoughts of making a clean getaway. So after a night of wild and debaucherous celebration, Maddie made sure to get up nice and early to share her love with all of those around her.
Her bleary eyed grandparents wished us well, packed the car and peeled out, ready to return to a more quiet and civilized existence.
Poop Happens! This is a surprise to no one who has ever had the pleasure of raising a child, but my little girl is different – she is a SNIPER. Maddie has the patience to become one with the environment – stalk her prey – and fire the shot before the target even knows it’s been hit.
Her doctrine is simple, “One shot, One kill!”
Today’s covert operation was Maddie’s most successful undertaking yet. The baby had a lunch date scheduled with her grandmother this afternoon. The trip out to the restaurant was fairly uneventful. Never one to be caught by surprise, Maddie took a seat in the back so she could see everyone who came in or out.
She spotted her grandmother right away and called her over to the table. Maddie stayed in stealth mode as her grandmother approached – she pretended to be a baby drinking a bottle in the arms of her PaPa, but looks can be deceiving. Grandma Mary Anne came to the table and greeted both of us and Maddie gave her a great big warm smile.
PaPa and Maddie’s grandmother started talking while the baby seemed to be innocently eating her lunch. It was then that Maddie’s father was catching a stray scent of cosmic proportions. A smell that had no place in this world. His hand instinctively went to Maddie’s diaper, but everything was completely dry. Hmmm, PaPa wondered if the lack of sleep was really getting to him.
He kept feeding the baby, but the smell was getting worse! He picked Maddie up, looked at her pants and nothing was out of place. Where could this smell be coming from? Suddenly he felt a warm sickly sensation ebbing down the left thigh of his jeans. He put his hand down there only to find a honey badger sized pool of nastiness gathering on his jeans.
He looked at his mother, scooped up the baby and said, “Umm, we might be a while.”
I busted into the bathroom and placed the baby on the changing table. At this point, the diaper is still clean, her pants are clean – Is there a hidden camera? Is this some sort of joke? This time I lifted Maddie up and turned her around and what I saw violated the very laws of gravity. A biblical poop storm had burst out of the back top of the diaper and shot up the back of the little sniper’s shirt. That’s right – the poop went UP!!!
Poop goes down, not up! Apples fall down, not up! I turned Maddie around and she was gurgling and laughing – “Hey PaPa, Didn’t see that one coming, didja?”
The cleanup was an arduous process with no good way in or out. To make matters worse, once I got the soiled clothing off of the baby, she went ballistic! She screamed to the high heavens as the people who walked into the restroom did a quick about face and hightailed it out of there.
I finally got my little angel all cleaned up and the second we walked back out into public, the water works suddenly dried up and the baby’s best Sunday smile was pasted across her face. She was all prim and proper, Miss Butterscotch and Ponies herself! No evidence of the mess she had made or the tantrum she had thrown. Just the perfect and happy little sniper – always waiting and biding her time for the next big hit!