Friday, April 16, 2010

I have a little discipline problem. But can you blame me?

I am so continuously astounded by Sabrina's ability to speak that I sometimes let it override the need to address her inappropriate responses.

Me: "No, you can't watch a second Spongebob Squarepants!"

Sabrina, angrily: "YOU CRACK!"

Me: Laughing at the made-up curse she has just hurled at me.

Me: "OK, it's really late. It's time to go so sleep now."

Sabrina: "No thank you."

Me: Doing everything I can not to erupt into a fit of giggles.

Me: "Stop making those spit bubbles right now. You are driving me a little crazy."

Sabrina: "Are you driving the little car or the big car?"

Me: "The big car!" I say, smiling, spit bubbles suddenly forgiven.

And so on and so on. This ordinary-kid blather seems like anything but ordinary to me. After seven years of speech therapy for Max, and the Dynavox, and all that we've done to encourage Max to articulate sounds, the ability of my other child to talk seems downright miraculous.

And so, rather than put my wise-ass little girl in her place, I am sometimes literally rendered speechless by admiration. I know that cracking up when she says something fresh is not a Good Thing, but I just can't help it.

I assume that the charm will eventually wear off, especially if she gets any more obnoxious.

I assume she will not grow up and blow spit bubbles on job interviews.

For now, I will try my best to enforce a little more discipline. But I am a fool for the love of her speech.


  1. I remember all too well when my boys started speaking and how I thought they were positively genius! I was mostly struck by the ease and beauty of natural development, and it made me admire Sophie even more -- what came so naturally to them was either impossible or near-impossible for her. For some reason, this didn't sadden me -- I just thought "wow" whenever she learned anything given her restrictions --

    And Sabrina is a character -- I love that face!

  2. Barbara from BostonApril 16, 2010 at 1:24 AM

    What a terrific picture of Miss Sabrina. That girl is going to give you, and everyone else in her universe a run for their money. She's five and full of sass and vinegar. No one will ever accuse her of not having an imagination.

  3. We used to enforce "silly time." That was when our daughter was allowed to say anything (within reason) during an hour of the day. The rest of the day was mind your manners time. :)

  4. She's going to have a way with words, like her mom, I'm thinking. Lucky girl! She's certainly sharp as a tack, and having the face of an angel doesn't hurt...who knows, maybe she'll be the head of the debate team at (fill in name of fancy college) and get the lead in the university play when she's grown! She's going to make a mark on the world, for certain!

    I have to admit, I don't mind a bit of sass...I was a wise-acre when I was a young one, and so long as they're clever when they're being smartasses, I can be very forgiving. Repetitive chanting of "Poopy poopy poop" punctuated with fart noises, though--that's not the way to my heart!

  5. What a smarty pants! LOL! She is hysterical! Yeah, I wouldn't know what to do, either, Ellen!

  6. I feel the same way about my JD - he is so verbal and articulate (not even 3 yet) that I let him get away with a lot. my husband gets mad at me for that. but i am trying!

  7. As someone with a disability who also had a younger sister who was able-bodied, I can tell you that Sabrina will grow up just fine!

  8. Not sure where to put this, so I'll just ask it here: I was reading the guilt post and it made me think of my own guilt. It's weird, but I've always felt guilty that my disability sort of overshadowed my sister's childhood. I often wish she could have had a more "normal" childhood instead of always sitting in hospital rooms and doctors' offices. Does that make sense?

  9. i am totally stealing "YOU CRACK!"

  10. same with my Noah. LJ does not have a lot of fine motor skills so I am continually amazed at what Noah can do. For awhile, I was letting him pull my hair (ow!)

    I've also realized that I better stop giggling over all the "bad" stuff he's been getting into, or I might really be in trouble. I can't help it, sometimes; it just seems like a miracle with how much he does, and so easily... I can't help but revel in it :)

  11. She is so funny! How can you not laugh when she asks you if you are driving the big car or the little car?!?!

  12. When I taught would sometimes have to turn my back so the kdis couldn't see my smile.

  13. I hear you ... my son has a five-year-old firecracker little sister, too. Although "You Crack!" is a new one, and too funny.

    I worry about my Mali, though, when other people let her get away with anything - and things she really shouldn't get away with - because she's so damn cute:

    But yes, relish your outspoken dynamo. She's beyond adorable.

  14. I have the same problems with my boys...and one of them is 8. Enjoy it!

  15. I can't blame you at all for "having a little discipline problem" You gotta love Sabrina, she is a young woman who clearly speaks her mind. Gee, I wonder where she gets that from! lol :0)

  16. I saw this posted on Twitter and it took my breath away.

    I didn't click immediately because you see, I have a daughter who was born with a complete bilateral cleft of her hard and soft palate.

    Several surgeries later and we're finally getting somewhere.

    For the first time, she's not recommended for summer session because she's not expected to regress with her speech progress.

    For the first time, she blew out the candles on her birthday cake ALL BY HERSELF. I fought back tears as she grinned the biggest, proudest grin of her life.

    It has been a long time coming. We've struggled to get her to talk since it was age appropriately possible. But she was stubborn. Only on her terms.

    But now, now she loves to talk. To sing. LOUDLY. At the top of her lungs loud. It doesn't matter what's going on around her. It doesn't matter if mommy is on the phone or if it's family movie night. Nope, if she's awake, her mouth is moving and she is talking or singing every second of every day away.

    And I am grateful....

    Even when I ask her to keep it down a notch or stop. And then I admit, I don't enforce it enough if she doesn't because the sound of her voice and my ability to understand the sounds it is making is a very beautiful thing.

  17. I love this last comment. The words that come out of Max's mouth are very precious, too. Although I think I've heard "I'M PURPLE MAX!!!" enough to last a lifetime.

    I am glad Sabrina amuses you. Yeah, she's got sass and a big mouth. Yeah, apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

    Marjorie, let me know if you successfully call anyone a "crack."

  18. Who couldn't be diverted and won over by that face. She is adorable. I totally get this. Every sound that my Emma makes my heart jump for joy. A little sass never hurt anyone. That Sabrina keeps me smiling.

  19. Oh, I drive the BIG car. Always the BIG car.

  20. I know what you mean. I am so astounded at what the youngest can do, it's so much more than our older, middle guy. I sometimes forget tht, and let the little guy run the show, just b/c it's so fun to see what he can do.

    And I know that's not right...


Thanks for sharing!

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