My talking 4-month-old
I know - call me crazy, but I swear Little L, my 4-month-old, is talking! Just hear me out. These are not your regular gurgling or cooing sounds - she actually repeats words back!
My son didn't speak until he was nearly 3 years old, and before then he was pretty silent, only uttering and mumbling (later we found out he had glue ear and couldn't hear properly) so having a talking baby was new to me.
Two weeks ago, my husband and I were watching TV when she looked up from her Minnie Mouse Bouncer and said, "Hellooooooo." It was more than just a noise - it truly sounded like she was greeting us. My husband looked at me and said, "Did she just talk?"
We both looked at her and we said "helloooo" again. Little L smiled, threw her arms up in the air, and then focused on us and said it again. Coincidence or not, my baby girl was talking to us!
Another day, my son and I were changing her diaper and it was a messy one. We both said "ewwww" at the same time, and Little L just looked back at us, smiled excitedly, and said "ewwww." Even my preschooler noticed that she was repeating what we were saying. Now, in the mornings, we wake up to her talking to us. At first it was strange, but we find it amusing. You can see her little mouth moving and trying to utter something - anything - to communicate with us. So, so cute!
I wanted to know more, so I did so a bit of asking around and reading on the matter, and sure enough it's the age where babies are honing their communication skills and are more alert and attentive to your emotions and voice.
According to BabyCenter between the ages of 4 and 6 months babies begin to "babble, combining consonants and vowels (such as "baba" or "yaya"). At about 6 months she can respond to her name. You may hear the first "mama" or "dada" now and then too…Your baby's attempts at talking will sound like stream-of-consciousness monologues in another language with endless words strung together. Vocalization is a game to your baby, who's experimenting with using her tongue, teeth, palate, and vocal cords to make all sorts of funny noises.
At this stage, babbling sounds the same, whether you speak English, French, or Japanese in your home. You may notice your child favoring certain sounds (like "ka" or "da"), repeating them over and over because she likes the way they sound and how her mouth feels when she says them."
I know that all babies develop differently, but I've also noticed she already responds to her name and follows my conversations with others in the room. In fact, when no one is paying attention to her, she "calls out" to us. It could also be part of being a second child; she has so much stimulation and noise
around her all day that she needs to make her voice heard. Smart girl!
When did your baby start talking?
- By Maria Jose Ovalle
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