Tom and I often joke to each other about how much Michael resembles one of Abby's favorite storybook characters, Curious George. Michael's got a monkey-like gait, a nose for trouble, and a colorful style of verbal and physical communication. His hoots, grunts, mumbles, and shrieks are uncannily reminiscent of the "voice" used for George's character in the cartoon series.
Interestingly, it was Abby who first noticed the similarities.
Though she has not done so in awhile (probably because he's finally starting to use real words now), for a couple of months Abby made a habit of affectionately referring to her little brother as George. When she really got into it, she would insist that not only was Michael "George," but that she was "Bill." If either Tom or I made the mistake of using Michael's given name at such times, we were quickly corrected.
While I'm excited to see Michael slowly gaining the confidence to speak, I know that I will soon be terribly missing the days when he would look up at me, wide-eyed and insistent, and find any number of ways to get his point across without actually saying anything. "My little monkey-boy!" I would reply, as I scooped up his perfectly-sized-for-holding-and-cuddling form. Already, I'm missing hearing his once-used nickname being thrown around, which Abby seems to have abandoned nearly as quickly as she applied it.
I wonder, though, when I look at this picture (taken last weekend), whether Michael himself is missing the nickname, too.
He seems almost to be asking, "Do I really look that much like him?"
Yeah, Little Buddy. Sometimes, you do.