Milestones: don't let yourself get caught up!
* A re-post, as a reminder that nothing in parenting goes by the book!!!!
New moms, this one’s for you.
My 9 month old, he doesn’t crawl. He slithers. He uses one leg to push him along and the other to steer. I don’t remember, or care, what my first son did at 9 months. I care that my younger guy gets himself around, is happy, and just pulled himself up to stand a couple of weeks ago on the ottoman. Way to go little buddy!
I can tell you though, there was extreme anxiety about milestones the first time around. Was he getting teeth at the right time? Was he clapping at the right age? Should he have started walking by now? I was OBSESSED with the charts, graphs, lists, info-graphics showing milestones for children. If my son wasn’t beating the charts, I worried.
Especially when he started talking. THAT was a huge one: did he have enough words at 20 months? Why didn’t he say words other kids were saying that were his age?
Funnily enough, something happened once he turned two. I started thinking less about where he was at and concentrated more on the fact that we could communicate! And he could learn things from me. It was great. And I guess I started paying less attention because son number 2 was born.
Now, I know people told me before he was born, and still do, that with son number two I will be more relaxed. And I am. I still care when he reaches certain milestones, and made note of when he sat up, clapped his hands, and I am so excited to see when he decides to take his first steps. But you know what? I find that it is only at his regular doctor’s check-ups that I am really paying attention to his milestones. Because the doctor asks, and needs to know, to make sure that medically and developmentally he is on the right track. So as long as my doctor is cool with his development progress, so am I. Honest. We were at the clinic today (for mama) and they asked me a few questions about his progress, he’s right on the nose for milestones so far. He is pretty big for his age – that did NOT surprise me (21 pounds and super tall), but I know he’s healthy, and that is my number 1 priority.
So for all you new moms out there. Read if you must, measure against the averages if you must. But be careful, all babies are different and will reach their milestones when they’re ready. Get your baby his/her regular check-ups and your doctor will tell you if anything’s off. I know it’s hard, but don’t stress: your baby is amazing and on his or her own track!
Aren’t they phenomenal, our little monkeys?