Dec 07

Authentic Dialog

by Hannah Holt »

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My son Michael* recently turned five. For the past year, I’ve been recording some of our conversations. Here’s sampling of dialog from when he was four years and three months old:

Michael: I had a busy day.

Josh (my husband): Why was it busy?

Michael: I did some very busy things.

Josh: What did you do?

Michael: I lifted some snow.

Me: What did you do after that?

Michael: I cut a piece of paper with scissors.

Me: And what happened next?

Michael: I went to time-out.

Me: Oh, did you play with scissors without asking first?

Josh: That’s exactly what happened.

Me: So what did you do after time-out?

Michael: I got a chance.

Me: You mean you got a second chance?

Michael: Yeah, then I gave Daddy a hug.


On another day, apparently out of the blue…

Michael: How many weeks until we die?

Me: Well, most people live until they are about eighty, and you are only four… So lots and lots and lots of weeks.

Michael: Did we die already?

Me: No… we are still alive, and I love being with you right here on earth.

Michael: I love you too Mom.


During a game of hide-and-go-seek, I heard the boys have this conversation…

Michael (to Grant* my two-year-old): I found you.

Grant: Da.

Michael: Where’s Mommy? Did she disappear?

Grant: (no response)

Michael: Yes, she did disappear! (walking around the house) Mommy, where are you?

Grant: Mommy.

Michael: Oh my gosh! She disappeared. (opening the fridge) She’s not in there (closing the fridge). Hmmmm. (opening the fridge again) Grant, do you want a sandwich?

Grant: Ya!

Michael: Which one do you want?

Grant: Da.

Michael: Just one. Mmmm. This is a good snack.

Grant: Da.

At this point, they had stopped looking for me, so I took the opportunity to sneak up behind them.

Me: What are you doing?

Michael and Grant: AAAAAAh!

Michael (offering me his sandwich): Here mom, I made a snack for you.


Here’s a conversation Josh recorded after I attempted to use Michael as messenger…

Hannah: We only have enough dough for one pizza. Go ask Daddy if he wants an all Hawaiian pizza or a half Hawaiian and half cheese pizza.

Michael: OK!

Michael (now in the office, mostly staring into the corner of the ceiling while talking): Uh, mom…dad [He calls Josh mom a lot on accident]. Do you want a whole pizza… or… or a small or large pizza… or… a large pizza… or half… a cheese sandwhich…. or a small pizza or…. a cheese sandwhich pizza?

Josh: Tell Mommy half and half.

Michael: OK!

Hannah (walking into the office, about 30 seconds later): Just to make sure, do you want a half Hawaiian, half cheese pizza?

Josh: Yes.

(L to R: Grant and Michael)

*Names have been changed to protect their privacy.

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