It happened first last week.
Camilla was talking to me, rambling on as she sometimes does, and I was nodding and half-listening.
"Mm-hmmm . . ." I commented.
"Mom, don't say Mm-hmm!" she said. "Say, 'yes!'"
She'd caught me. But I wanted to be sure. "Why, Sweetie?"
"I don't like it when you say mm-hmm."
"Do you feel like I'm not really listening to you?"
Mm-hmm. Bad Mommy!
Today in the car, she was talking about the pretty fall colors, on the trees, on the leaves on the ground in the woods . . . I did it again.
"Mom, don't say mm-hmmm! Say 'yes'. Actually, say, 'Oh' and then say 'Really'?"
I said, "Oh . . . really?"
She's no dummy, this child of mine. And shame on me for not really listening! For taking her voice for granted and counting it as commonplace, when it's one of the sweetest sounds in my life. Even when she's screaming at the top of her lungs, "I want to wear a different shirt!" Then maybe, I pretend I'm not listening. But when she's telling me about the fall foliage or the picture she's drawing, let me hang on every word.