Friday, April 14, 2006

Baby talk

I’m not sure it was much of a conscious decision, but Tony and I haven't really told Joseph anything about his new brother or sister. It’s like Catherine Newman said about her son Ben in her book Waiting for Birdy, “We’re trying not to talk about [the baby] too much with Ben: for someone who goes nuts in the one second it takes you to pull the top off his yogurt, nine months might as well be a thousand light years.” I kind of feel the same way, but there are plenty of people who have talked to Joseph about it. I don’t mind so much really. Usually they just say something like, "Are you going to be a big helper for Mommy?" Or, if there happens to be a baby nearby, "Are you going to have one of those pretty soon at home?" He doesn’t seem to get it, but I know better than to assume he’s not taking it in.

At some point, however, someone must have mentioned something a little more specific, because he seems to know something is going on with his mommy’s HUGE belly. At first I thought he was just confusing the words. He would say, “belly.” But then a word that sounded maybe something like “baby” would come out. Now he does it all the time. If I say, “Does Mommy have a BIG belly?” He’ll often say, “baby.” And then the other day it started to get a little freaky. He grabbed my shirt, looked under, looked at my belly button, and then after saying “baby,” he looked at me and said, “Get it.” I told him I couldn’t because the baby wasn’t ready yet. He seemed satisfied.

At first I thought that this must be very strange to a little kid just learning about the world. But then again, I bet most things are pretty strange to him. Everything must be so new and weird – or maybe just new, not weird. I mean, we keep bowls in the cupboard, toys in boxes (well, for the most part), food in the refrigerator. Why wouldn’t there be a baby in Mommy’s belly? Now we’ll have to see what his reaction will be when we actually “get it,” and can’t put it back.


Blogger fatwonkkid said...

get him all hopped up on sugar...then break the news to him. it might soften the blow like alcohol for adults.

5:46 PM  
Anonymous guh! said...

Just for the record, I'm not the one who tipped joseph off about the baby!

8:35 PM  
Anonymous Pat said...

My son Zavier used to say "open it" to my belly when I was pregnant with Malia. Such sweet memories...

8:46 AM  

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