Indoors Column: Long Goodbyes

Our baby Cady is 20 months old.  She is really starting to be more of a little person than a baby.  She only says a few words, but those words, she says a lot!

 

Autumn usually puts Cady down early.  I always stop in to bring her a drink and say good night.  I say “bye” and then shut the door behind me.

 

Lately, just before the door latches, I hear Cady answer, “bye.’

 

I pop the door back open and say, “See ya.”

 

She answers in kind and then I shut the door.  Again, before the door latches, I hear, “bye!”

 

This process repeats over and over again with no clear end in sight.  I hate to leave her hanging since her words are filled with such enthusiasm.  I fear it will break her little heart if I don’t answer.

 

Usually, the decision of when to quit is out of my hands.  The other four kids are always still awake and one of them generally requires some sort of immediate discipline that pulls me away.

 

Last night was one of those nights.  I left Cady hanging while I went downstairs to handle some domestic altercation. It must have taken half an hour.  I finally sent the other kids to bed and as I shut the door of the boys’ room, I heard Cady’s little voice across the hall.

 

“DAD!!  DAAAAAAAD” she screamed.

 

I poked my head in to see that she was no closer to sleep than she was earlier.

 

“What, Cady?” I asked.

 

“Bye,” she said laughing.

 

I’m not sure she really knows what “bye” means.  I hope she never does.