Monday, November 12th, 2012
It’s official folks. My little man is on the move. He started crawling at about 8 1/2 months, but at first it was just a couple inches. Now he scoots and can make great strides. His technique is different than Fia’s was. He uses one leg to push off each time. It’s kind of like what you see a dog or cat doing when they want to, well, scratch their butt. I’m just explaining that so you can visualize how he looks.
I assure you, his butt is spotless. His only purpose is to gain ground and get to a place where he can pull himself up. Like the trampoline.
I can see his wheels churning. “Crawling?” he’s saying. ”Puulleeeazzzze. I just want to stand and walk. Then run.”
It’s time to babyproof. Time waits for no man. Especially this one.
Dog picture via Shutterstock
Categories: Have Baby, Will Travel, Milestone Monday, Mom Situations, Newborn Care | Tags: baby milestones, baby moves, baby proofing, crawling, first crawl, first step, milestone, milestones
Tuesday, June 5th, 2012
Today my heart broke a little bit. That’s because I took Fia to her gymnastics class. We go every week. But today was different. Today she went to the “big girl” class.
Coach Sam told me awhile back to get on the waiting list for the next level up. He said he thought she was ready. I read Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother and I hated that woman. But in that moment, standing by the uneven bars with her swinging steadily, I got a glimpse of my inner Tiger. I beamed. I was so proud. I wanted to push her. Make her the best she could be. I couldn’t wait to get home and share my joy–yes joy–with Phil.
I bounded in, out of breath, “They want to move her up in gymnastics!” I exclaimed.
He looked at me, slightly puzzled, “Yeah, okay. Great. So??”
“But they want her in an advanced class! Advanced.”
He gently reminded me she was just over 2.
Yes, I know, we’re talking about a now 2 1/2 year old. But growing up, gymnastics was my love. I was never very good at it, but I persevered through high school. I always wished my parents had started me earlier. This is the only sport I can see myself being an overly pushy parent on, so I am acutely aware of the need to show restraint. Keep the Tiger on a leash.
Back to today: Fia and I arrived and went straight for the trampoline–her favorite. I noticed no other parents were chasing tots around on the mats. Just some coaches and kids quietly practicing skills. Wait, we were used to the free-for-all. We usually run in and bounce from one thing to the next, catching some mild structure and instruction in-between. This was different. Subdued. A coach approached me.
“Can I help you?”
“Yes,” I said. “We are here for my daughter’s advanced tots class.”
“Great. Wait behind the gate and at 11:45 we’ll call her in with the other girls.”
“But, what about the trampoline?”
“The advanced class isn’t free play. Parents sit and watch behind the gate. We work with the kids by themselves. You can come for the beginning though and see how she does since this is your first day.”
I gulped. She sat quietly on my lap, my arms holding her tight as we waited. When Fia was called in, I went too. But as soon as I sat down with the 6 other tots and 2 coaches, I realized she didn’t need me there. They told her to run and touch the cone. She did (I cheered loudly–then quickly shut up). Hop on one foot. She tried (didn’t realize what a skill that was). Then they were off to the trampoline. She and the others ran towards it with glee. I was left sitting on the mat. Alone. Realizing how quickly time is passing.
From afar, I watched her bounce happily and do seat drops. They moved onto the rings where my girl held on like the best of them. She waited patiently for her turn.
The balance beam was last and right in front of me. There she went walking confidently across. Then on the smaller one. All by herself.
From the moment they are born, it is our job to make them independent of us. It is primal. The baby feeds off you, then weans. She rolls towards you, then crawls away. She walks into your arms, then turns and runs. They still depend on us, but little by little they gain confidence to be okay on their own. It is a bitter and beautiful reality.
And it’s really f-cking hard.
Today I stood on the sidelines and cheered for Fia. Silently. I must remind myself to tread lightly. As she finds her footing, I must too find mine. It is a delicate balance between holding on and letting go. But this is my job–the one I signed up for when we decided to have kids. There’s a reason it’s the hardest one in the world.
Categories: Fearless Feisty Mama, Milestone Monday, Must Read | Tags: breastfeeding, crawling, dependence, gymnastics, independence, pregnancy, primal, running, toddler, walking
Saturday, August 7th, 2010
- When Fia started crawling, I had to constantly be on top of her all hours of the day. It’s funny how you wait for these milestones and then when they happen, they sort of become minefields. You’re psyched, but also realize the layer it puts on you, your surroundings, and your life. (Oops. Hold on. She just banged her head on her favorite play toy—a saucepan—under my husband’s alleged watchful eye. Uh-em).
Okay, so back to the milestones that change your life. For example: sleep. All I wanted in the beginning was for Fia to sleep for more than 3 hours. At 4 ½ months, when I was deranged from lack of sleep, we did Ferber. I’m relieved to say she goes in her crib at 8 p.m. and sleeps until 6 a.m. There is no disputing I’m getting better sleep, and therefore am slightly less deranged. Only now I find myself waking up every few hours to look at the monitor and make sure she’s breathing. Yes, it’s obsessive. But I have a feeling some of you can relate. It’s gotten so bad, my husband put the monitor on his side so it’s more of a hassle for me to see. I guess I’m realizing that in thisbaby world, everything comes with a tradeoff.
This tradeoff even happens with the cat. In the beginning I wanted her to notice him. But in those early months, both feline and Fia ignored each other.
Then when she hit 6 months, it all changed. She smiled and cooed at Wayne. At 7 months, she started to crawl towards him, grab his fur, his whiskers, his tail—whatever she could get a hold of. Wayne was patient at first, but now, all bets are off. It’s a full on war from his point of view – and a never-ending game from hers. She grabs at him and laughs, he bats at her. He has all his claws and I’m terrified one of these times he’ll swipe her beautiful face. No matter what toys I put out for her, it’s always the same beeline for Wayne. It’s like Groundhog Day in our house (and yes, Wayne is as big as a Groundhog).