Guessing games

This morning Pudding woke up crying. I hear him whimpering in his cot and go to get him out. When I bring him downstairs he sits on the sofa, his normally cheerful face red, contorted and tear-streaked.

Cuddles make no difference.

Even breakfast doesn’t tempt him.

Was it a bad dream? Was he feeling sick? Was it something else?

I put on the TV and Twiglet finds his favourite show, ‘Sarah and Duck’. The magic box soothes him, the storm passes and a few minutes later he starts on his cereal. I hover with towels and sick bowl at the ready, just in case.

It is this that I hate most about having a minimally verbal child. That I never quite know what is going on for him in his times of need. That I have to play the guessing game. That even when he does talk I don’t always know what he’s trying to say. No matter how many times he earnestly repeats ‘De de de Doo’ at me, I haven’t a clue what it means though I know it’s obviously important to him.

I know we’re better off than some. His language is improving all the time, slowly increasing in vocabulary and clarity. He can now put two words together, though only in limited situations. And I am hopeful that he will continue on this path.

Of course it would be fabulous one day to hear ‘I love you, Mummy’. But he doesn’t really need to tell me that because his actions tell me that every day. What I would love him to say even more is ‘Tummy hurts’. Words like that could make such a difference.

He’s fine again now by the way, sick bowl still unused. I’m just faced with the problem of how to turn the TV off without becoming very unpopular again.

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