Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Family Vernacular

This Post Brought to you by the Letter Y



I have started recently to talk in a strange lingo ending words in Y.  I'll hand the boys a bottle and shampoo and demand, "Washy-Washy!"  or reprove them with, "No Touchy-touchy!" After spending their entire lifetime speaking to them in the grown up language of fully formed sentences and adult vocabulary, it strikes me as rather odd that I have suddenly reverted to some version of friendly cave-speak.

However, I think such idioms are the language of affection, and nostalgia.  The memory of my mother singing "Mom Thing" culls memories of soft round warmth in a way nothing else does.  When I think of how she put up with me deciding to call her Moo-Moe, at age 12,  I have the feel of snuggling and her rubbing my back in a way other memories don't capture.  

Nothing more fully represents the closeness my brother and I shared than our secret chirping noise made in the back of the throat that we used to identify each other in crowded areas. 

Our secret familial language is a way of saying, "we are us," in a way that separates outsiders and locks them out of our word play.  And I hope my new "talky-talky" conversations, while not eloquent or sophisticated, will live in my children's hearts and remind them of the best parts of having me for a mother.


Or maybe I've just been watching Raising Hope  too often. 




Image: rogercatlin.com

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