Welcome to my Weblog!
Welcome to 1 Mother 2 Another! To read my most recent weblog entries, scroll down. To read entries from one category, click the links at right. To read my journey from the beginning, click here. To find out more about me, click here.
Top 5s
Short on time? Click here to go to my Top 5s Page - links to my top five recommendations in every category from Breastfeeding Sites to Urban Living Solutions.

The Human Jungle Gym

Madeleine’s got a new favorite toy, and all others pale in comparison.  The toy provides hours of fun, keeps her constantly enthralled and moving, and causes her to peal with laughter and get a great workout all at the same time.  Unfortunately for you, I won’t be linking to the wonder toy, because said wonder toy is Mommy.
I am now literally lying down and letting my daughter walk all over me.

After a nap, Madeleine’s in a mood to be somewhat cuddly but not too snuggly, ready to play but not be overwhelmed with colors and sounds.  We’ve been hanging out on the floor of her room, just chatting and looking around at stuff, but she’s gotten to that squirmy, don’t-wanna-sit-still-but-can’t-get-anywhere age.  We lie with her on top of me, belly to belly, and she pushes herself up and crows for a few minutes before beginning to look around speculatively.  So for the past couple of days I’ve been creating a human obstacle course.  The goals are to challenge her, encourage her to move in a forward motion, keep her engaged, and require as little effort as possible on Mommy’s part.
From lying on my stomach, she’ll swing her legs to the side to “climb” down.  On her knees facing my belly sideways, she looks at me expectantly.  I’ll put a favorite stuffed animal on the other side of my stomach, and she’ll begin her problem-solving.  First she’ll try the old reeeeaaaaccchhh as far as she can without having to move anything else.  Then she’ll begin tucking one foot under her little body and using it to push herself forward in short bursts.  Finally, she comes up with the brilliant idea of putting both feet underneath herself, and suddenly she’s “standing” with her body lying across my stomach, arms stretched out to the puppy.  If she’s lucky, she’ll pinch his nose triumphantly right before falling down on her hiney, dragging puppy with her.
Notice how much effort Mommy expended in all that.
And we’ve got endless variations: we use the omnipresent boppy as an additional obstacle, as a bumper, or as a landing cushion, whichever’s needed.  We add multiple toys in multiple directions to send her into an ecstasy of indecision.  We add multiple dimensions: sometimes Mommy’s sitting up in the chair!  Sometimes Madeleine starts sitting up!  Whatever will happen next??  And then there’s the ultimate thrill ride – the full somersault, with Mommy pulling us by our legs (gently!) head over heels and back again.  My favorite part of that one?  9 times out of 10, Maddie’s placidly sucking her thumb the whole time, so great is her faith in me.
But while she blithely uses me and seems to be oblivious to me as anything but a human prop, a piece of playground equipment, she still gives me glimpses that she knows and needs Mommy.  She’ll be sitting up facing away from me, happily chatting to a dolly with me completely out of her sightline and apparently out of mind.  I’m sitting at an angle behind her, encouraging her to sit up and balance herself but ready to catch her and cushion a fall should the work prove too much for her.  And every once in a while, a hand will surreptitiously sneak back in my direction, pat my leg a few times –without looking back – to reassure herself that I’m there, then go back to playing with Dolly.
It’s good to be the mommy.


Post a Comment

House Rules

Here are the rules for posting comments on 1mother2another.com. Posting a comment that violates these rules will result in the comment’s deletion, and you’ll probably be banned from commenting in the future.

1) Register first. If you would like to post a comment, you must create an account with us. Check out the home page to do so.

2) Constructive comments only. If you cannot maintain a respectful tone in your posting, even in disagreement, your comment will be deleted. We’re all trying to find our way in this thing and are struggling to be the best moms we can. If you disagree with something I say, feel free to politely email me. If you disagree with another reader’s posting, you’re welcome to kindly post in reply. Vitriolic diatribes will be deleted. This site is about encouraging and supporting, not tearing down and chastising.

3) Questions welcomed. If an entry raises a question, you’re welcome to email me directly or post it. Keep in mind that postings will result in public replies by strangers and not just me.

4) Don’t steal. All original writings contained within this website are under copyright protection. If you link to us, please credit us as your source and provide a link back to our website. If you're interested in using an excerpt in published material, please contact us.

5) Share your photos! We'd love to have photos from our registered readers to show on our home page under "Maddie's friends". Email us a jpeg of your little one's best photo to photos@1mother2another.com. Please, no photos from professional photographers which fall under copyright protection.