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I'm In No Rush

Is it wrong of me to want Madeleine to go a little slower in the development department?

 None of us ever think we’ll be one of those parents: the ones who push their kids developmentally, play language tapes while the baby sleeps, and brag to everyone that little Johnny put his toes in his mouth a full two weeks before the books predicted he would.  But I’ll confess, I read ahead in my parenting books on what to expect in the coming months, then I hover anxiously to see these miracles happen, maybe even verbally coax her to try to help her out.  Ok, maybe say things like, “Can you roll over for mommy?  All the other babies are doing it!”  I know that if she’s more than a couple weeks off of the experts’ estimates for any stage – binocular gazing, grasping, holding her head up, whatever – I’ll start to panic and pressure her.  And what baby needs that kind of pressure?

I’m starting to realize, though, that early development will be have a definite down side, namely, more work for mommy.  The first time Madeleine rolled over and we were sure it was on purpose, not some arm being trapped underneath her or something, she was a week shy of four months (not that I’m keeping track).  For the next few weeks, the rolling was pretty sporadic.  She’d do it three times in five minutes, then rest on her laurels for several days.  Over the past two or three days, however, she’s been flipping around gyminee_time.jpgconsistently, and not just stomach to back but back to stomach (not that I’m bragging.)  Today I watched her on her playmat, and one minute she’s cooing on her back contentedly.  Suddenly she spots herself in her mirror, and thinking for a second, she expertly flips herself over to get a better look.  Instantly, she’s pushed up on her arms, gazing happily at her reflection.  Here’s what scared me – the ease with which she did it.  The fact that the flip itself wasn’t an activity, but a means to an end.  On her tummy, pushed up on her arms with her legs flailing, I had a sudden vision of her crawling madly all over the un-child-proofed house.  Oops.  It occurs to me now that the faster she develops, the sooner she starts crawling, the sooner she starts walking.  And running.

 I look on the bright side.  Having to keep up with her sooner means maybe I’ll lose the last of my pregnancy weight sooner. Right?


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