29 March 2010

T’is me, t’is me...

Last Friday evening, and Cathal and I are playing a fun game: “Where is…?”

So I ask and sign “Where… is… Mamma?”

And Cathal’s face brightens up, he looks left, right, left again, then points to the kitchen and signs Mamma.

And yes, Mamma is indeed in the kitchen.

So I ask and sign “Where… is… Dadda?”

And Cathal’s face brightens up again, he looks all around, then points up and signs Dadda.

And guest what? The Dad is upstairs…!

On we continue with our game, and I ask and sign “Where… is… Cathal?”

Now a big smile appears on the little face, an index points to his torso, and then the hand shapes itself into a horizontal curve… Hold on a sec, did you sign “Cathal”? I repeat the question, and he repeats his answer with the two clear signs.

Ok, the “C” curve for Cathal should be vertical, but hey, what is important here? He told me his name, and I understood. Similarly he signs Mamma and Dadda the same way at the moment, and it’s for us to work out the context. But as long as it’s all about his parents… it’s for his Dad to say how he feels about being signed as a mammy…

The thing is that this was the first time Cathal was signing his name, first time ever, ever! And he did it for me! Yea!

So we moved on the last part of the game, me asking and signing “Where… is… Nana?” and Cathal’s pointing at me, and then his hand rising to touch the back of his hair (his version of Nana).

We then excitedly went to tell Mammy that Cathal could sign his name. She did not quite believe us, but we demonstrated. When the Dad came downstairs we also told him, but our attention had shifted to more interesting things, so we did not demonstrate again. However I have it from reliable sources that Cathal has shown both his parents throughout the weekend that he not only knows his name, but can produce proof of his identity at any time.

But I was shown first. He trusted me enough to try out the sign with me. I feel very privileged. And kind of chuffed.

Another simple yet precious moment between my little prince and I.


Clive said...

Ah, what a very special moment and so very special that he shared it with you first. That was so lovely to read!

Thank you for sharing it with us.

best wishes
Murray's Mom

Mel said...

So exciting! I'm such a softie, I have tears in my eyes reading this ;) FYI, Luke's sign name is the right hand in the shape of a capital L/gun on the right hip as if holstered, and then brought out to shoot- inspired by the old cartoon (French?) "Lucky Luke"!

Jeffrey Goble said...

(Lapsing into California-speak)
Awe-some, Dude!

Syncopa said...

I just recently found your blog, og have enjoyed reading through your posts. Thanks for giving me a smile on my face tonight as I read this. Grandmothers are magic, you know ;)

My name is Sarah said...

Ahh that was a sweet story:)

Nan P. said...

Mel, the Lahm (Irish sign language Cathal uses) "L" sign is very similar to yours, but you seem to "draw the gun". Very western.

And you are right, Lucky Luke is originally a French comic book - I am a bit of a fan of these so called children comic books that are in fact so for adults! I have several complete series in my collection - never grew up! ;-)

jazzygal said...

Ahhh...that is fantastic Nan P! Well done Cathal.... clever boy!xx Jazzy