Friday, January 10, 2014

Three small words

My son took a while to get going with speech. I will admit, I spent some time of Google, wondering if he had a speech delay. He took his time. He listened. He studied us. He said all of 5 words at age 18 months. He had about 25 by age 2. And then he exploded. He now is extremely descriptive with colors, numbers, body parts, animals, vehicles, types of buildings, kinds of trees, etc. He has very elaborate conversations with me and my husband every morning, using facial expressions, hand gestures and lots of exclamations. In short, he is a typical 2 1/2 yr old.

There was just three small words he had yet to say...until today.

Leif has never said "I love you." For a while, it was all I could do to keep from crying when he would just stare at me when I would say, "Leif, can you say 'love you, mama'?". It would kill me when he would just turn away and go back to playing. I would sigh and say, "I love you, pal."

Dead silence.

I never stopped saying it, though. Over and over. I love you, Leif. I love you. It became a mantra. I sorta gave up that I would hear it, and stopped asking him to say it back.

Then, this morning, as I pulled him out of his back and wrapped him in his "truckit muckey towel" (chocolate monkey towel), I leaned down and kissed his wet head and said, "I love you, Leif."

"Huff you too, mama."


"Leif, what did you say??
"Huff you too, mama!"


"Uh-huh, yes mama!"


My kid loves me! I couldn't believe it. I scooped him up and kissed the life out of him. He was dripping wet and squirmy, but I couldn't be happier. I was so excited I called my husband and had him listen, for proof. I had my honest-to-God answer. Leif loves me back. My heart burst with love for this small, smart, quiet little boy. He loves me.

I can die happy now. I am so loved.

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