Wednesday, December 1, 2010

La La La La

"Helping" Mommy put away the laundry.
I have to tell you that I have never been so entertained by baby jargon before.  Ellie Bellie Bear has been making all sorts of sounds for months now.  She is loud.  Very loud.  So loud that her incessant happy babbling wakes us up before the sun is up.  Yes, I realize how funny this is too many of you given that I am both loud and a nonstop talker.  Yes, it is indeed payback time.

Ellie Loves the tree, but she prefers the M&M car.

People with DS tend to have speech delays and if you happen to know someone with DS, you might think that they "talk funny".  There are many reasons for that aside from the global delays associated with DS.  There are several physiologic characteristics of DS that cause the delayed vocalizations and the lisp-like pattern of speech.  Hypotonia or low muscle tone does not just affect large muscle groups, but also the smaller muscles of the cheeks and the tongue.  This makes it difficult for Ellie to form words.  Sucking thickened fluids (ie yogurt and applesauce) from a straw helps improve the tone of these muscles.  Crooked teeth, pointed teeth (vampire baby!  Yeah!), and/or abnormal arrangement of teeth also affect the ability to make sounds in addition to a high-arched-palate.  Sounds such as "s" or "th" are formed with the use of our tongues, palates, and dentition. People with DS also have what is termed mid-facial hypoplasia or rather a small middle of the face which includes the nose and sinuses.  Add all of these physiological characteristics together and speech becomes affected.

Shift dress &leggings!  There is just something about baby fashion.  Looks good on all babies, unlike misses/petites clothing.  Bear-Bear is on the petite end so the dress is a bit long.

Elle Belle is very vocal and is now consistently incorporating "mon mon mon mon" with the occasional "mamamamama" into her repertoire.  Mostly when agitated. This makes me SO happy and proud :- )  Yay!  Jumping up and down with Mommy happiness!!!!

Baby Feet! Tutu leggings!  This is almost as exciting as tights.

Andrew and I have been working so hard to coax that "M" sound out of her.  So much so that Ellie might actually think Andrew is "mama".  Now these sounds are not specific.  If I say "Where is Mama/Dada?" she just stares.  However if we reword the question to "Where is Mommy/Daddy?", she will seek out the correct parent.

The complete outfit which of course only lasted until lunchtime. Uck, reflux!

What is specific though? The Bear is starting to have "conversations" with us.  She is not saying any actual words per say, but she babbles now in a reciprocal manner.  Only with "la la la la".  If you say "La la la" to her, she will respond back to us with "la la la la".  If I sing my happy little car jingle:

"We're going for a ride in the car.  Lalala. Lalala."   Ellie Bear will sing the "lalala" portion!  Again, Mommy jumping up and down for joy!  Super Ellie!

I open the closet to refill the diaper drawer.  I turn around and there is an Ellie Bear.  She found her bouncy chair . Oh and tights!!!!!

Am I worried that Ellie will not talk?  No, I know that she will eventually and that I must be patient.  Ellie is really good at helping me slow down and take things in stride. However, the paranoid Mama that I am does worry about if she will be understandable to others.  Perhaps this is useless worry, yet worrywart is my middle name. Until then, I am embracing her "Mon Mon Mon"s and her "lalala"s.

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