I used to worry about not being able to have conversations with Ben, wondering when - no, if - we would ever just talk. But in the last couple of years, Ben's language skills have progressed to the point where we can have fairly sustained, back and forth conversation.
He still struggles much of the time and I'm not saying it's like My Dinner with Andre around here, but there are times now where we really do just talk.
Like last night while getting ready for bed.
Ben: Mommy, I wish I could go on a real adventure.
Me: What would you do on a real adventure?
Ben: Warrior things. I would fight bad guys. I would fight in the Civil War.
Me: The Civil War was a long time ago. And warrior things are really for grown ups. So if you want to be a warrior, you can do that when you grow up. You can join the Army. People in the Army protect us.
Ben considered this for a moment as I continued, trying to be matter-of-fact, knowing - hoping - that he'd forget this conversation long before he reaches the age to enlist.
Me: But when you're a warrior, or solidier, you have to live far away from home and I would miss you.
Ben considered this again. Then I heard a familiar tremble in his voice, the one he gets when he's on the verge of tears.
Ben: But, mommy...What if there's a bad guy...what if I get killed?
Me: Yes, being a warrior is very dangerous.
Ben: I think when I grow up, I'll have a job in a big office.