When Aidan was a baby, I thought briefly about teaching baby sign language classes. I should be a natural, right? I am deaf... I am a teacher (okay...currently on a 4 year "break" at the moment from that particular profession but 12 years in combat counts for something)... and I had a beautiful, dimply, sweet, and non-complying little wild bambino. *sigh* It's the non-complying part that killed the deal for me. Bless his heart.
Here I am... Deaf mom extraordinaire with the little wonder child she can hold up to demonstrate to her classes and say... "Look! This is what your baby can do!" Only problem? The child. would. sign. nada. *pulling hair* Worse yet? All the hearing moms I talked to that claimed their two week old could sign the alphabet, even count to 100, AND sign every animal at the zoo. Yes, they were just two week old babies, I'm sure. Yes, these moms were all online so they might have exaggerated a bit. No matter. I couldn't lie. I said... he can sign "up". Yes... he could point up. It's a sign. It counts.
I threw in the towel. I said to myself, when he can talk, I'll start teaching him signs! He'll learn! He may learn at the age when it's not so hip anymore, and the other moms have moved on to compare how colorful their children's SPOKEN language is... and how long their sentences are, but maybe we were meant to march to our own drummer because sentences in this household for the two and under crowd are pretty. darn. short.
So... one of my child's biggest hobbies is raiding the refrigerator. Fortunately his dad and I are getting much better about locking it since the egg episode (don't ask!) He will come to me and point and yell for "cheese, cheese, cheese!" So in the name of food, my child has finally begun to learn a few signs willingly. He can sign "Mommy please", "Daddy please", and "thank you" which are much more pleasant ways of being directed to food. He is a little sponge and tries to copy every sign I teach him. He finds it fun! Yay! This is much easier than trying to demonstrate anything visual to a hyper busy baby that is much too busy looking at anything and anyone but his mother when she is actively standing in front of him squeezing her hand and exclaiming, "baby... look! look at Mommy! Milk! Milk! Can you say milk?" Ah, those were the days!
He loves to sign "dog" and his attempt to sign "duck" is priceless. He will usually just scratch his head behind his ear when he is attempting to sign "cat" but he will verbalize "Sassy" after the cat in Homeward Bound, so I have to give him points in originality. My favorite signs to do with him? "I love you!" Aidan says something along the lines of "I lub you!" which is really cute. I lub him too.