I always thought we didn’t have many baby words when we talk to Abhi and Achu. After all, it makes sense to teach them the right word (even if pronounced wrongly) than substitute some baby words. So, we will always say ‘Procrastination’ for ‘Procrastination’. Always. That’s the rule. 🙂
Well, that was until I realized how many new or baby words we use. Especially the ones that get ‘eee’ added to the end.
Out first baby special words were “Ishi Ishi” and “Kab Kab”. Both were Achu’s words. Even saying them twice was her idea. One day she pointed at the water cup and said “Kab-Kab” like she wanted it. So the next time I was using the same word for water because I thought she understood it as water. Then I kept hearing our nanny use the same word too. Assuming that it was some code language for them, I continued using “Kab Kab” for water. Couple of days later, checking with our nanny, she mentioned, she was using the word because she heard me use it and thought the word meant water in Telugu. Yes, Both of us were utterly tricked by the little girl. We laughed at the confusion, but the word stuck for ever. An year or so later, even now, Abhi and Achu know Kab Kab is water but we still use the same word for water. And I don’t think we have any plans of letting go of the word. By choice, of course. 🙂
Then, at the same time as last one, Achu fell down, fake hurt herself and told me that she got “Ishi Ishi”. And I said “Oho. Ishi Ishi bye-bye Achu” and then all her fake pain was all gone. There, the second one. Even now, Ishi-Ishi comes a zillion times everyday. The word also gave me a nice substitute to use for something getting negative. Saying bye-bye to everything is also something we still commonly do everyday.
Another time, Abhi and Achu wearing their diapers ran away from us, before we could put some pants on them. P used to call them “naughty boy and naughty gal”. So, that turned into anyone not wearing pants as “naughty boy” or “naughty gal”. An ask for “Amma, Can I be a naughty boy?” means that Abhi doesn’t want to wear his pants today. Achu was also a ‘naughty boy’ for many days until she figured she would better be called ‘naughty gal’.
Buthabey, Abuchikraks, Nakuseena were all Abhi-origin words. Kammagi was Achu’s. Of course she immediately coined ‘Achuchikraks’ because Abhi said ‘Abuchikraks’. We named our last fish (which btw, passed away last year) Buthabey. And we have signed the unofficial deal that the next pet fish will be called ‘Abuchikraks’. I thought Nakuseena was some random word Abhi coined and I recently found out that he was repeating that word from a Spanish music toy. See, Abhi could speak Spanish and I had no idea.
Then, there is common ‘Mammu time’ for food time. That’s very common to use for kids. However, you know what the mammu we make when we mix rice with yogurt is called? White mammu. I know. No brainer there. But, it’s used very commonly around here.
So, Achu’s hair. The silky shiny hair. And the super cute rings at the bottom, all nicely tied into a ‘Pulka’. Nope. Not the eating one. We call the pony tail, ‘Pulka’. It is actually a silly name in Telugu to call the pony-tail ‘Pilaka’. However, our non-Telugu speaking nanny was so dearly calling it ‘Pulka’ (we love Achu’s hair A LOT) and I didn’t have the heart to correct her. So, Pulka it is. Btw, if you are around here and are allowed to tie Achu’s hair, remember you will be clearly told by her little highness that the ‘Pulka, On top of here’. She will point to exactly where should want it. And No. Doing two pulkas is a sin to commit.
That’s not all. Our major baby language comes from the extension of ‘ee’ to many many words. Many. And saying the same word twice. Like we do ‘Brushee Brushee’. Toilet paper is ‘Toilet Papereee’ (For Abhi, its Toilet pepariya). There is ‘Kinnee..Kinne’. Correctly pronounced as ‘Cleanee..Cleanee’ now. Bunny hat is ‘Bunny hateee’. Strawberry is of, course ‘Strawbee’. I could go on and on. Last time, nanny was talking to her son on phone, she told him to go ‘Readee-Readee’. I’ts a serious problem around here. 🙂
As Abhi and Achu’s language improves by the day, we might not be coining as many baby words as before. But I surely want to hold on to these special words. And always say Kab-Kab for water. Always. 🙂