In the last month, I’ve had a lot of time to reflect on things. My father had surgery to close an abdominal abscess from a hernia surgery back in 2003. This abscess was infected with MRSA (now resolved) and the surgery was complex. My father is currently recuperating at home. It’s pretty intense. The visiting nurse service is coming 3x per week as is a physical therapist. Though he has the go-ahead to get back to most normal activities, he cannot come back to work for another 3 weeks–though he may stop by to supervise (as it is his company). And my mother’s Parkinson’s Disease has also worsened. The day after my father’s surgery, I took her to her specialist in NYC. The visit was good and bad. Good in that I have a better understanding of what’s going on. Bad in that I’m not entirely sure my mother is completely lucid all the time.

So a lot of stress for me as most of this falls on my shoulders. My brother, who lives in the family home, is not able to help me. His business is not to share here, but I can say that I’m alone in this. And my husband has a long, stressful commute to his job in NYC and when he is home, things still fall on me. Add taking care of a chronically cranky toddler (maybe not chronically, but definitely often), I’m feeling overwhelmed.

Therefore I let a lot of my worries about Little Man’s speech go for now. He is now 21 months old and he still doesn’t say that much, but I have noticed an increase over the last week. I’m hoping that over the next 2.5 months I see a major language explosion so I can go to his 2 year well visit in August confident that he is progressing as he should. But if he is not, my focus WILL shift back to my son’s speech and I will get him any and all aid he needs.

I’m still hoping he’ll just suddenly say to me “Mama, yogurt please!” or “Dada, more berries.” We’ll see.

Little Man is my joy. He really is. Even when I complain about the tantrums (the ones for no apparent reason are the worst) and how hard it is to change his diaper sometimes, he makes my life complete. Not so long ago, really, I thought I’d never get married or have a child. I’m glad things turned out as they did. And even though once upon a time I thought I’d have two children–a boy and a girl–I am content with just my boy and hope that one day, he will marry a fantastic woman who will, in some way, become a daughter to me.

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Dude is worried about Little Man’s speech. He is very concerned that it is not at the level where a 20-month-old should be. I’m not really sure if I should be worried or not. He says words–about 10 to 15 with consistency–but he’s not speaking in sentences and the only “new” word of late is rock.

I keep wondering at what point do you call Early Intervention? My pediatrician’s office is great and I am going to speak with the doctor to discuss this before “jumping the gun” or panicking. And you keep being told, as a mother, not to compare your child to others. But I don’t see how you CAN’T compare. I take Little Man to The Little Gym on Sunday mornings and while he IS the youngest in his class (Beasts: 19 months – 2-1/2 years), it seems at times that he’s the only child NOT participating in the “circle” time and he’s too busy exploring. But then he DOES come and run with the group and he climbed right onto the parachute last week, so he’s improving. Maybe he just needs time.

I think Dude worries too much sometimes. And I think HE thinks I’m too Laissez Faire about milestones. I don’t think I am. Usually I’M considered to be the frantic one. But I keep thinking that Little Man is progressing as he should. He’s a toddler. He’s still a baby in many ways. And he may just need time to get there. Right?

Heck, Little Man didn’t walk until the day before 15 months. That wasn’t a delay, but it was later than some children. (Though Dude didn’t walk until 18 months and I was 17 months.) And I was told by my MIL that Dude didn’t talk until he was 2. Neither did my brother. Nor my one cousin. So 20 months and only saying a handful of words isn’t TOO odd.

I know that Little Man understands a LOT and hopefully he’ll ease our fears shortly. I guess I can’t help but worry a little, he’s my first child. My only child. I want him to be where he should be. Not “perfect” but at the right level.