Tonight, while reading Where The Wild Things Are, S— pointed to the monsters and said, “Person. Person. Person.”
I started to correct her. I pointed and said, “Monster.” But, I mumbled the “ster.” What am I doing, I thought?
“That’s right,” I said. I pointed to the figures in the picture. “Person. Person. Person.” There were no monsters for S—. She may not even have the word or the concept. The figures didn’t frighten her. She saw Max and the Wild Things and didn’t differentiate. Why should I teach her the word monster? Why would I teach her to fear that which is different?
We finished the book. Max sailed home, in and out of a week, and back to a warm dinner waiting in his room. Soon, S— would fall asleep. I laid her down in her crib and slipped out the door. The whir of the sound machine, a soft susurrus in the background.