Thursday, December 08, 2005

The Pout

Aidan's first experience as a fully independent human being, was to have a suction cup rigged on the top of his head, and then forcibly yanked into this world. Of course this did not hurt me one bit, since I was sufficiently drugged, and quite in the mood to have this 6 lb object removed from my nether-region. This first thing that I recall seeing of Aidan, was his mouth, fully agape, and a hyperbole of its size has since etched into my memory. And then, as he sobbed on my chest, there it was: the fat lower lip, in a complete and perfect pout. It was all rather cute. The exhaustion, excitement, ecstasy of that moment overpowered the simple fact that that suction cup device no doubt hurt. He had a bruise of the top of his head to prove it too.

Well the bruise went away, but the pouty lip, open-mouth crying thing did not. This is Aidan's signature gesture when he is hurt. He used to pull out the fatty lip pout, when he was hungry or generally colicky, and later when he was hurt or afraid. These days it's mostly a response to physical pain, or utter devastation if Eric or I reprimand him for playing with the toaster or trying to run away. The fatty lip pout seems to have lost its potency. No longer do I melt with compassion  - especially if the lip is pulled as a coercion method. I have, however, rediscovered its potency.

Remember I was rueing Aidan's slow speech development? Well, its still slow, but there is speech, which means progress, and has allayed my panicky fears for another few weeks. Nevertheless, his sophistication as a three year old continues to evolve at lightning speed. When the intellectual and emotional complexity out paces language one thing is bound to happen - complete and utter frustration. Now, I will say, this is not a chronic condition, and it is getting better - he is able to voice some concerns such as "Mok" means "milk" which means "I'd like a drink". You need to have your Aidanese translation capability fully operational if you intend on spending any time with him. Frustration usually manifests as a whack. He'll whack me on the leg if I am not complying to his demands. This may be due to the fact that I am not paying attention, or I have not completely understand said demands, or because there is no way in hell that I am going to allow him to drink coke in a sippy cup. So there is the whack. And if you are so fortunate as to have a child who struggles with language, then you know that it's best not to confuse the "No Coke" message, with the "No hitting" message.

Then serendipitously, I discovered the perfect anecdote to the "hitting-because-I-am-not-getting-my-way" reaction. I kneel down to his level, (and usually he will whack me again, just because I am such an easy target) and then I pull out my best fatty lip pout and then issue forth my best Aidanesque lament. The first time I did it the results were pleasing as much as they were shocking. Aidan abruptly starred at me, and then returned the gesture. Only he made TEARS. Wow. I've been outdone by my own kid. And there it ceases both hitting and unreasonable demands. It's all rather astonishing. I pull out the fatty lip-pout with a sob only in case of emergency. That means when all other tactics are no longer effective.  

I am still trying to decide who is the better actor?


MC Etcher said...

How precious! When the kids are grown, you could give them a collection of these anecdotes in a book.

hotboy said...

My money's on the kid for the best actor award! Hotboy

Carslemane Foraix said...

G'day Heather. Just thought I'd let you know that the Awful Writing Competition results are now available over at my place.