Dear Future Stella,
Recently Current Stella has found her voice. This is typically something most parents say around 4-5 months when their baby discovers that sound happens when they push air through their lips in various ways. To say this about a child who is rapidly approaching their 5th birthday is shocking and a bit like getting lice for the first time when you are 25.
Current Stella. Does. Not. Stop. Talking. Ever. It’s a monologue of sentences that start, stop, restart and sometimes, if we have the stamina, ocassionally complete a thought. She is constantly offering commentary that is obvious. “Mom, you just poured yourself coffee. I can tell that you did because I saw you put the coffee in your cup and now you are drinking it so I know that you poured yourself coffee.” Break. “You pour yourself coffee every morning. You do that right away and then you drink it. When you are done you sometimes leave your cup on the table and sometimes you bring it around the house with you.” Slight break. “Daddy drinks coffee too. Coffee is for grown ups, right?” No pause to answer. “My teachers drink coffee. Coffee is hot. Daddy takes his coffee with him and you drink your coffee at home.” By now im contemplating the idea of a dog shock collar. Could this work for children? Is that weird? Do they sell one on Amazon Prime? Current Stella interrupts this solution by continuing on, “I just drink water. Some kids like juice and milk. Grown ups like coffee and wine…” And some moms like shots of tequila in their coffee and I now see why…..”When I’m a grown up I will drink coffee and I’m going to have twin girls and I’m going to be an artist.” I show slight enthusiasm to what appears to be a segue into a new topic. “I bet I will drink my coffee while I do my art.” Insert imoji of a gun, followed by the emoji of a coffee cup.
This scenario is repeated all day long. Earlier today your Dad actually counted the seconds between Current Stella’s words to see how long of a break she took. Once she started talking again he would stop counting. I believe the highest he counted to was 6. Just 6 seconds of silence was the biggest break we got.
Anyone who knows me will say that I like to talk. It’s true, I have a lot to say and I rarely think before I speak. I also talk really fast. I also mumble towards the end of sentences. I am known to say offensive things unexpectedly. Based on this, I can see how one would think this is the pot calling the kettle black. Not only do I not know what that means (except that it’s clearly racist) I also whole heartedly disagree. I might talk nonstop just like Current Stella but the types of things I chose to rant on about are usually interesting or thought provoking or at the very least, uncomfortably funny. Not current Stella. She’s either telling us real time stats or re-educating us on facts that are already taking up prime real estate in our memory- like every name of every princess. Oh really, the mermaid’s name is Ariel? No shit you dumbass, I saw that movie when it was first released and I memorized every song when I was a child so please don’t condescendingly tell me the name of the one with red hair. I choose to call her Sea Slut, it’s called a nickname. And by the way, Ursela is a damn genius for deciding to take her voice away.
“Mommy, what day is my sleepover?” It’s not this Saturday but the one after that. “Ok, so first it will be Monday, then Tuesday, then Wednesday, then Thursday, then Friday, then Saturday, but not the sleepover Saturday, then Sunday, then Monday, then Tuesday, then Wednesday, then Thursday, then Friday, and then, Mommy, guess what day it will be??” The day I voluntarily get my ear drums removed? “No, it’s my sleepover!!!!!!! Remember Mommy, you said it wasn’t this Saturday, or the next day which is Sund-” Shhhhhhhhh!!!!!!! I am fully aware of how a calendar works and the concept of time.
The crazy thing is that Current Stella is still relatively quiet and shy in any atmosphere that’s not exclusively made up of her Mom and Dad so it’s like we are taking crazy pills. Nobody else sees, or technically hears, this nonsense im telling you about. She’s so sweet and gentle and calm and whispers and looks away when people address her. I can’t prove it, but I swear she gives me this devil look that says, “oh you just wait Mom, later, you are going to hear the answer to every question they are asking me right now. I can’t wait to tell you my name, how old I am, and what school I go to because it appears you might be on the verge of forgetting….”
Future Stella, do you still talk nonstop about a bunch of shit that nobody cares about? I really hope not. In fact, I hope this is like when you were 5 months old and slobbering on everything with no self-awareness and I had a moment of severe anxiety when picturing your first date. Then, what felt like 3 seconds, but was actually the better part of a year went by, and I realized you no longer had saliva pouring out of your mouth in a steady stream. Maybe this is a natural transformation of sorts that nobody ever told me about? Perhaps it goes from saliva, to words, to nonstop-run-on-incredibly-boring-sentences-that-border-on-paragraph-long-diatribes, to, I don’t know, pleasant normal conversation that makes sense and doesn’t totally suck the life out of you? Is that possible you think? I hope so.
Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, shhhhhhhhhhhh.