For 3 years now, we’ve had the joy of listening to the Buster talk without the initial “s” sound in most words. My personal favorite: “snuggle” becomes “nuggle,” as in, “Mom, let’s go nuggle,” when it is time for him to go to bed. “Snow” was “no,” and “snake” was “nake”… you get the idea. I really didn’t know or care of it would ever change. We could tell what he was saying 98% of the time. It did lead to some funny moments though, when we didn’t quite understand.
“Mom, I need a ring.”
“No, a riinngg!”
Eventually Zoe would pop in to give me insight on what the appropriate word was.
Hence, we didn’t even really know if the Buster knew he was saying the words differently than most of the rest of the family.
Then, today, it happened. Actually, this afternoon, and Buds and I were both there for the exact moment.
Zachary wanted an apple. Buds was going to get the apples ready for Buster and Yessa. I was crawling around in the dining room, picking up legoes.
“Dad, cut off the skin.”
I stood up, and stared at the Buster.
“What did you say?” I asked.
He looked at me curiously, then put his finger on the apple as if I was a little simple.
“Cut off the skin, the skin.” He jabbed the apple for emphasis.
This morning, heck an hour prior, it would have been “kin, cut off the kin.”
And now, it’s “skin.” And “snow,” and “sneaky snake,” and all the other phrases we had him say on the phone calls to the grandparents so they could celebrate this little milestone with us. And celebrate the Buster, the ever-changing, ever-growing Buster.
Still, it makes me a little melancholy. That same feeling I had when Monkey stopped calling the basement the “base-up.” Or when “smoothie”stopped being “soothe me.”
Or when Yessa learned to say “nummers” instead of smacking her lips together to tell me she needed me.
Little milestones, tiny, little things, that all add up to one day closer to these children being not children anymore.
But always my babies. Always…