I am finding it so delicious watching Ben develop into a person, especially with language and communication. His ability to share his world with us and his awakening to the power of speech and sign is tremendous to watch. His frustration at being a wee lad in a big world is so often mitigated now by at least being heard, if not actually getting his desires met. He has always been very observant, widely taking it all in, but now those deep brown eyes positively light up with joy at accomplishing a task or communicating a thought. I love it... so much! I suspected I would, but I didn't know to what degree it would delight and satisfy me. I was raised in a family with a profound love and appreciation for words and learning in general. I still buy my father cool etymology books, or books of words from other languages which express concepts so much more precisely than English (eg. Mensch, Yiddish for an honorable, good, kind man). Both of my parents are teachers professionally and at heart, and I am helpless to resist the same urge with my offspring.
Although I speak with Ben in French, he is surrounded by English and most of his words are in English. I do think however that there is a good chance of him saying his letters and numbers in French first since he and I love to pour over those books together and I seem to want to emphasize how cool they are. He is fascinated by words on a page and watches my lips form the sounds. Since he doesn't speak much French yet, A and I are floored by his comprehension of long and complex French phrases, such as asking him to get the socks in the front hall basket and bring them to me in the kitchen since we would be leaving soon [he goes and gets them and also perhaps a hat or coat]. He can process his world in two languages and act accordingly. It’s fascinating! His brain would be so interesting to watch if we could, all the neurons dancing and forming. He is so elastic, like all children, so absorbent. I know it’s developmental, but I can’t help but wonder how great it would be for adults to be so curious, so determined to grow and learn, so engaged and present in everything they do. Marvelous.