Wednesday, January 23, 2008

He Speaks...

Lukas has been doing quite a bit of babbling lately, exercising those vocal chords for when he can actually articulate some of the things he has been trying to tell us. Like "Pay more attention to me! I'm more interesting than that black box you keep playing with" or "Spinach and Potatoes? You've got to be kidding. Did you like Spinach when you were small? Now give me more Bananas or someone is going to get hurt"

He has, to my delight, been practicing the da-da sound quite a bit "ada-ada, da, da, ada-ada" and for a while was doing the "ama-ama" sound too. However, even though we have been waiting with much anticipation, he has yet to look right at us and do a recognizable "da-da" or "ma-ma" so we can't in good conscience count those as his first words as much as we would like to. It is wonderful to hear the "ada-ada" and it makes me so happy to be a father, watching him develop into a little person who is cognizant of the world around him.

Mrs. LIAYF and I were thrilled however to confirm yesterday that even though he is not vocalizing his first proper words quite yet, he is in fact speaking to us in an officially recognized language: ASL. We have been signing with Luke for a couple of month now, hoping that he would begin to pick up some basic communication skills and it now appears to be paying off! We started with some basic signs: eat, change, cat, keys, telephone, diaper, wet, sleep and most important of guessed it, MILK. This sign consists of starting with and open hand and squeezing your fist together.

About an hour before Mrs. LIAYF returned from work yesterday, I said to him "mommy will be coming home soon" to which his response was a very clear ASL milk sign. When mom got home she confirmed I was not imagining this but that he was indeed signing for milk. "He just spoke his first word" she exclaimed. We are both so proud, and can't wait until he gives us the other signs we have been working with him on, although the sign for "keys" (as in 'to the car, ada') can wait.

The ASL Pro home page is great, with video clips of all the signs and a section for infant signs as well. I have this favorite placed. Happy signing.

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