I have become fluent in a language other than English. No, it’s not Spanish or French. And I’ve forgotten just about all the German I learned in high school and college. Except how to say super helpful things such as shut the door (mach die tur auf) and elbow (elenbogen).

But the language I have now become fluent in is toddler speak.

All of a sudden Riley has become a chatterbox. Every time he falls, before I can usually even ask if he’s ok, he says, “I’m ok Mommy.” He says Pees (please) and Horry (sorry) on command, but he just loves to chat up anyone and everyone.

There are times though when I’m even at a loss as to what he’s saying. Tonight we were driving in the car and he said, “Anta! Are you?” Calling to to ask Santa where he is. We’re two months past Christmas, but this little boy has not forgotten the jolly old fellow. In the next breath he said, “Bee bo bee.” He kept saying it and I couldn’t figure out what he was saying. Then it clicked, Christmas tree. He was obsessed with our tree and said goodnight to the bee bo bee every evening, but it had totally slipped my mind.

Most of the time, Derek and I are the only ones who knows what he’s saying. “He wants blueberries,” I tell my mom when he yells bowbehwees!

Other time all we get is a tiny little, “Meh!” No, that does not mean he’s indifferent and emo. It means he wants milk. Now.

He calls his BFF, our dog Lola, “Wahwhoa.” It’s the cutest thing ever, but Lola has not yet realized he’s talking to her when he yells, “Wahwhoa! Here!” Soon enough she will.

Another favorite is “Gahgogeen.” Any guesses? That’s his word for Vasoline. Why does he have a word for Vasoline? There’s a tiny tub of it on his changing table and he loves to hold it while he gets his diaper changed.

I know the day will come when he properly pronounces the letters R and L and everyone can decipher what he’s trying to say. So I’m enjoying every single moment of being my little man’s interpreter.

And if he wants to pronounce his name “Yiyey” for the next couple of years, it’s so cute that it’s just fine by me.


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