Over the past week our baby’s ability to communicate her needs to us – and our ability to read her signals – has increased dramatically.
I started signing with her a couple of months ago, but very sporadically. I usually remembered to do the “potty” signal when she was on the potty, but aside from that, it was only occasional use of the “eat” “more” and “all done” signs. I knew it would take a more concerted effort to make it work.
Somehow, a week or so ago, my mom and I started using the signs a lot more consistently. First was “all done”, which she started using when prompted at the end of a meal or the potty. Accompanied with “ah duh!” Then one day my mom saw her using “more”, which she does adorably with two fists butting together. “mo, mo” is her verbal addition to that one, and today she was saying “mo, mo, mo, mo” at one point instead of signing for more food.
Then a few days ago I realized that she is getting the hang of the potty sign. I have been asking/telling her in the morning that we’re going potty and she starts waving her right fist in front of her body!! And then this morning when we tried that she didn’t want to go – but about 15 minutes later, after breastfeeding, she started making urgent “uh uh uh!” noises and signing potty. I got her on there and my dry-diaper girl went pee! Later in the day husband called from the back room, “I think she’s going poo” and got her onto the potty for a poop. Turns out she had been signing, grunting and making her poo face but as he doesn’t use the sign with her, it took a while before he realized what she was saying.
And even more exciting: she’s started combining signs! She will sign “more food” (more eat) when we’re playing and she’s hungry. And husband swears that when on the potty, he asked her if she was done and she signed “more potty” (i.e., more poop, which is what happened when he took her off the potty prematurely).
What an incredible communicating genius!!
I’m highly motivated to teach her more signs now. Drink, maybe types of food, up and down (whcih we’ve been working on too), milk, on and on. She uses “more” a lot for wanting just about anything, so I think it will help us to know what she wants if she has more signs. And she seems to love it. Just imagine how great for a kid who isn’t talking to finally be able to make the big people figure out what you need! I love it.
A step towards family peace for all of us.