Baby Language Development: Mommy, Mommy!
Submitted by Deva Dalporto
My daughter's first word was "cat." Both my husband and I were thrilled she was talking—and I was secretly thrilled her first word hadn't been "Daddy."
My excitement didn't last long: Her second word was "Daddy." I didn't fret, though, because I knew that her next word would be "Mommy." Right? Wrong. Months have passed since she first uttered "cat," during which she has accumulated an extensive vocabulary: "night-night," "ball," "dog," "ut-oh," "hi," "bubbles" and "thank you." But she flat out refuses to say "Mommy." In fact, whenever she wants me, she screams, "Boob! Boob! Boob!" Is that all I am to her—a big, walking boob? I'd really like to know why I am at the bottom of the heap. How do I rank below a ball? Not to mention that it's very embarrassing to be called a "boob" in public by your 1-year-old.
Why won't she say Mommy? It's not as though she has a hard time with the M sound. She "mmmmmms" all day long, so I know she is capable of pronouncing the darn consonant. Lord knows she hears the word enough, since I constantly babble, "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy" in the hope that she'll catch on. I'm starting to think she's being vindictive.
Doesn't she realize that she's hurting Mommy's feelings? The woman who gave her life! Seriously! I gave everything up for this kid—my time, my career, my perky breasts and flat tummy. The least she can do is call me by my much-deserved title. I hate to say it, but I get jealous every time I hear her say "Daddy."
I don't know why it's so important to hear those two little syllables, but it is. Somehow, I guess, I think it would be like her saying, "I love you. Thank you. You are so important to me!" all rolled into one.