When Lily was about a year old we wondered whether something might be wrong with her hearing. As a test, my husband clapped his hands practically right beside her ear and she didn’t flinch. I smiled, having conducted a very simliar test earlier. I walked away from them and said, barely above a whisper, “Lily, would you like a cookie?” to which she nodded. This not only confirmed for me that her hearing was okay but that she was definitely my child (mmm cookies).
Although we were confident that she was fine we had to go through hearing tests anyway as the first step of her speech therapy. Lils passed with flying colours and we finally knew for certain that she was just ignoring us.
Over the past 2 years my sweet little bulldozer has continued to hone her skills – it’s often like I’m not even in the room. There are days I am truly thankful that she is so unbelievably adorable because it’s all that’s keeping the “free to a good home” sign from going around her neck.
But she inadvertently let the cat out of the bag this week. As odd as it is to hear my words being used against me, I now know she’s listening.
We were sitting together playing tickles. With an expectant smile and wide eyes she sat on my lap waiting for my hands to speed out to grab her again. Once tickled she would say ‘No more tickles!’. I would stop and whistle looking off into the distance and after a few moments her eyes would widen in anticipation. Again, my hands would rush to her sides. After a few rounds she decided to change things up a bit and instead of saying ‘stop tickling’ through her infectious giggles, she pointed her index finger at me and said in a most authoritative tone ‘keep your hands to yourself mama’.
The fact that it’s still a fairly recent phenomenon that she’s using her words at all probably added to the shock and cuteness of it all.
The next day, Lily did all she could to get under her brother’s skin but suddenly Jack’s obnoxious whining stopped and I heard him say ‘Lily, if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all”.
Ah-ha I say – they both listen to me! They pretend not to but they do. With that knowledge I shall cling to the hope that one day they just might obey.