"You're in trouble!" Max informs me with a smirk on his face, after I drop a bunch of hardboiled eggs on the kitchen floor and they scatter everywhere.
I laugh, as I always do when he says this. It started a couple of months ago, and I'm not sure where he got it from. It's not something I say.
I am fascinated by the phrases Max picks up. A few years ago, he started using "OMG!" appropriately, thanks to his wonderful teacher who understands the importance of enabling kids with intellectual disability to know age-appropriate words.
Max has also been saying "See ya!" lately, done with a big sweep of his hand. I saw his teacher at Back To School night and told her about it. This, too, came from her—she no longer teaches Max but whenever she stops by the class, it's what she says.
Oh, and like any teen he particularly enjoys saying "I know!" when I tell him things. Lately, I've been trying to get him to say "See ya later, alligator!" more clearly—he needs to practice his g's.
I also enjoy hearing him asking: "How are you?" and "Are you OK?"
I relish these exchanges because I will never, ever take his speech for granted—or the fact that he has grown into making conversation and asking questions. I'm also thrilled that he's expanding his repertoire of words and phrases. Max has such a big personality, and he tries to hard to express himself through speaking even if his speech can be hard to understand.
Still, I don't hesitate to call him on it when he's teasing me.
"Max, I'm not in trouble for dropping some eggs—people make mistakes!" I tell him.
"OH!" he says, and laughs, and I do, too.