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A Mouth Forever Babbling

BabblesLately it seems as though the frequency and duration of Justine’s babbling as entered into the “endless” stage.  Whether she is playing with her toys in the living room, standing at the crib rail in the middle of the night, or flying around in her Fisher Price Cessna 172 waiting for clearance to land, she is constantly spouting random noises.  You could probably describe it as cute, except for those occasions when you are trying to sleep, or jam a spoonful pureed artichoke and liver down her gullet.  In both cases the outcome ends badly, one the next morning and the other with more immediate consequences.  For now, at least, this new developmental step has definitely taken the forefront of our daily parental existence.

When you first bring home your newly minted tax deduction from the hospital, there is generally only one predominant noise that emanates from them, which academics probably refer to as “infant oral status notifications” but the rest of us refer to as “baby screeches.”  As time goes on however,   they begin to unleash a variety of noises, including adorable coos, occasional laughs, and the omnipresent poop grunt.  Eventually they start to realize that these hilarious sounds are coming from them, and that they can deliver them at will, much to everyone’s initial delight and later chagrin.

We are currently in the midst of the babble stage, in which our daughter, often for hours on end, delivers various diatribes about her life in mono-syllables, usually accompanied with wide eyes and arm flailing.  It’s not unlike some of the people that stand on street corners loudly shouting to no one in particular about their various causes, such as the world’s imminent end, the war in Iraq, or the devastating price of Black Diamond Aged Cheddar at Wegman’s.  The only difference in this case being that I attempt to understand and react to her rants instead of trying to run her down with my car (except the cheese guy – he’s good for America).

I always wonder if “the babbles” is actually not random utterances of Justine testing out her vocal cords with no particular message in mind, but rather complicated statements that are stuck in her brain but her mouth can’t figure out how to get out in the same way that we non-diaper wearing folks can.  After all, I assume with 10 months under her belt, she’d have a number of cogent opinions about topics of the house – optimal height settings for the activity table, whether cats as a species are really planning a massive overthrow of their human captors, whether the stated capacity of her diaper was clinically tested or just a “best guess,” etc.

Maybe those random “words” that come out of her mouth  do have some meaning – even something as simple as “Babababa,” which she is always drolling on about.   Some have suggested to me that this is her way of articulating “bottle.”   I suppose – but that’s a reasonably shallow conclusion.  After all, couldn’t she also be referring to famed Avatar of the Age Mehar Baba?  Or Babar the elephant?  I mean, what if she’s actually just issuing an esoteric warning, referring to the Who’s Baba O’Reilly which is used as the theme song for CSI:NY starring Gary Sinise who was in Forrest Gump which spent a good deal of time on shrimp, a shellfish that a good number of folks, babies included, are deathly allergic to?  Can we say for certain that is not the case?

Regardless of present circumstances, I assume the march forward of time will see her slowly begin to coalesce the random word fragments into coherent thoughts, then sentences, then lengthy soliloquies and finally “Monk” style summations. By then she’ll not only be able to TALK, but have the capacity and mental fitness to TALK BACK.

And I’m not looking forward for what went around with me as a kid to come back around to me as a parent.

- MWF -

Fatherhood Friday at Dad Blogs

Posted in Day to Day Baby Living, Milestones. Tagged with , .

  • paul(mytwodaddies)

    Watching the communication develope in your child is amazing. We are having so much fun with it right now. Our son is 16 months…and his babbling and voice inflections are pretty cool

  • WeaselMomma

    You so don’t want to know what she is actually saying to you. You’d have to slap her. Just smile and laugh and talk back while pretending she’s not being disrespectful.

  • Lauren

    Enjoy not being able to understand her. I was thinking the other day about the what if’s of having to take a job at a daycare center. I decided I’d be better off in the infant room – at least they can’t sass ya!

  • Jason

    Just wait until those babbles become words, and those words are ENDLESSLY repeated…

  • New-Dad-Blog

    My little one just started cooing the other day. Up until now she just grunted. I can’t wait for the babbles

  • Super Mega Dad

    I remember just wanting for my kids to start talking so we could see what going through their heads. Now all we do is tell them to use “inside voices”. ;)

  • SurprisedMom

    My youngest was very late to talk. She did go through all the stages, including the babble stage at her own pace. I heard her whispering for a long time. She wouldn’t babble or talk out loud for awhile. One day she opened her mouth. Her first loud word? NO! Enjoy the babbling. One day you’ll find out she was reciting the Gettysburg address.. Nice post. I enjoyed stopping by.

  • ciara

    be grateful for the babbling and not the attitude and back talk you will get when she reaches the tween stage. ’nuff said. lol

  • Joel

    Ooh! Yeah, we’ve just entered the “talk-back” phase. Little Man is still not monologuing, but he’s more than capable of delivering a deft “No” in response to our queries about his willingness to do any particular thing that is good for him, but not necessarily fun for him.

    That said, the first time that those babbles become words directly associated with baby’s surroundings is a particularly awesome moment. I never imagined that “cow” would make my heart skip a beat, but it did.