Monday, 12 March 2012

Wombat the chatterbox

The other week I was blogging about how I didn't feel like I had as much of a connection with Wombat as I would like, among other things. In that post I mentioned that Wombat doesn't talk much and that I was going to make an appointment to see a speech pathologist. Well, last week we went to see one.

We had to swing by Seagull's pre-school, which is on base to drop him off first. As we were leaving the base, Wombat had a really confused look on his face. I suppose he was wondering why we weren't dropping him off at childcare.

I wasn't too sure what to expect. The speech pathologist had a few toys and books set up on her table. Wombat was interested and was given a toy train to play with while Thunder Maker and I had a chat with the speech pathologist.

Wombat went back to the table, but all of the toys were out of his reach. The speech pathologist grabbed the toy that Wombat wanted and sat down on the floor to play with him. Over the hour of our appointment, they played with several toys. Wombat also came over to me at one point and was getting a bit whingy, so I started jigging him up and down on my knee and singing a song that he likes. It goes:

Giddy up, giddy up, giddy up horsey!
Giddy up, giddy up, GO GO GO!
Giddy up, giddy up, giddy up horsey!
Giddy up, giddy up, WHOA!

By the way, you know you've been singing that song way too much when you catch yourself singing it while on weekend shift at work. At least there was no one else around to hear it. Anyway.

The speech pathologist suggested that I don't start singing the song until Wombat indicates that he wants me to. At the moment, his approximation of "giddy up" is "g g g" while he jigs up and down on my knee. It's pretty cute. I also have to stop just before the "GO GO GO" bit until Wombat says it to me. Again, all I get is "g g g", but the speech pathologist says that's OK. At least he is trying.

After a few more pieces of advice, we headed back to the base to drop Wombat off at childcare. We got there right as lunch was being served up so he was a very happy little boy.

Since the appointment, something seems to have clicked with Wombat and he is trying to communicate so much more. He's started going through the stage of handing me things and saying "Ta". He is generally coming up to me much more to initiate play.

However, I've also realised that whenever we sit down to play, Seagull is butting in and sort of taking over. Obviously, he is not doing it for any other reason than he wants to be involved, but it means that Wombat doesn't get as much of an opportunity to practice his speech. Right now I am trying to figure out how I can play more with Wombat in a way that is going to improve his speech without Seagull butting in. All I have been able to come up with is to tell Seagull that he needs to be quiet and let Wombat have a turn.

One unexpected consequence of Wombat's efforts to communicate is that I feel like we are bonding really well with each other. It feels like we are on the same wavelength without any interferrence for once. I've spent so much time watching Wombat sleeping lately just marvelling at how cute and peaceful he looks.


tahlia @ the parenting files said...

they all get there in their own time. I have also been told that they need to be motivated to talk and know they have to talk to get what they want. I know with Little E she doesn't have to say anything and she gets it so I too have to learn to wait for her to talk.... slowly slowly!

Sidetracked said...

Funnily enough, Wombat has started to talk a lot more over the last month and is saying and/or trying to say a lot of words. His latest favourite is "down, down, down". Can you tell that he has mountain goat tendancies? :)