My oldest daughter (Sutton) talks all-of-the-time. In the morning, she sits straight up in bed and begins her day mid-sentence. It’s almost as if she is completing her thought from the night before. When the sun sets, Sutton falls asleep with words on the tip of her tongue. Her conversations are not “conversations” in the traditional sense. With Sutton, there is no “back and forth” and very little audience participation. My day sounds something like this . . .
“I am hungry.”
“I’d like some cereal for breakfast.”
“Do you know what kind of cereal ponies like?”
“Why do they call them ponies and not little horses?”
“Mom, I’m not really into My Little Ponies anymore.”
“Maybe Hannah will want them?”
“I love Hannah.”
“Hannah has golden hair.”
“You should brush Hannah’s hair because it is sooooo pretty.”
“Hannah likes Princess Aurora the best and I like Belle.”
“Princess Aurora (aka “Sleeping Beauty”) has golden hair too”
“I want to play the drums.”
“I went to sleep last night thinking about clouds.”
“Do clouds fly?”
“Can I have ice-cream instead of cereal?”
“What time is it?”
I have no idea which part of the conversation I should react to. If taken literally, I’d be pouring a bowl of ice-cream flavored cereal, while Googling the flight pattern of clouds, and brushing Hannah’s hair.
It’s frustrating, and it’s only breakfast. Let’s face it, kid conversations are as cute as “pound puppies”, but they can get old, quick. After eight consecutive hours of jabber, I’m spent. It is so much fun to talk to Sutton, I just wish our chats didn’t resemble the finale of a fireworks show . . . loud and intense.
Yes, I do mandate an hour of independent play each afternoon from Sutton, however she still produces noise. From behind her closed bedroom door, I hear the hum of wedding music (I can’t believe Barbie took Ken back after he was caught swimming in the pool with Jasmine), but I digress. Even in her quiet moments, Sutton sends sound waves throughout the house.
So, I’ve resorted to my own quiet time. Each night between 5-6 pm, I pop in earplugs. For one hour I block the sound of questions, the TV, the whining, and I cook. Quietly, I cook (my personal passion). During my quiet time, I’m attentive to my tykes, but I just calmly taking a mental break and Sutton gets it. Whenever I bust out those plugs, she steps back and finds something quiet to do like a puzzle (which she talks her way through piece by piece) or a coloring book (where she announces each crayon choice).
But, it doesn’t matter because I can barely make out a peep. For one brief shining moment, I get my silence . . . and it’s golden.