I’ll come clean. As a first time mum, I was naive.
I wasn’t ‘my baby does x because I’m a perfect parent’ naive or ‘I’ll never give my child a dummy and they’ll only eat organic vegetables and never tantrum in public’ naive. I wasn’t that kind of arsehole (I hope), but I did not appreciate how good I had it
Not sleep wise; she was a shocker for getting and staying asleep.
However once she was past the newborn phase and her silent reflux was successfully medicated, my daughter was a textbook baby.
She hit every physical milestone precisely when she should have. I’d get an email from my handy child-rearing app telling me ‘this week, your baby may sit up for the first time!’ and as if she was receiving them too, she would.
She sat up around six months. She was rolling around a bit before then, and learned to crawl somewhere between eight and ten months (yea, not the best at recording milestones, me). She took her first steps on her first birthday. I remember that one. It was at soft play. The bounciest, most sensible place for one to attempt first steps.
She was average in the very best sense of the word.
My second baby, however, makes her look like a slug.
He was born channelling Sparta, I should have known I was doomed.
Born able to roll on to his side, it was not long before he was going all the way over. And then back. And then using this method to get himself across the room.
At about four months, he started sitting up with no support.
He turned six months and off he went, crawling across the carpet towards wires, choking hazards, anything that has been dropped accidentally and of course, the bin. Since then I have been constantly removing things from his mouth and I have no idea where he got them.
He has since worked on sitting himself up and pulling himself up, firstly against the sides of his cot, then on everything else.
He’s now six and a half months and he has decided that the next challenge is cruising around on the furniture and climbing over anything in his way, including the sides of the bath seat which happily contained the toddler safely for many months.
This dedication to learning to become mobile is admirable…
However it’s severely testing my nerves. For this reason I’ve had to build a cage.
I mean play pen, it’s a play pen.
The toddler did not need to be locked away. She would sit, happily, playing with her toys with a remarkable level of concentration. She still does now. I could go for a wee knowing that she was unlikely to concuss herself on a singing potty or find a piece of masking tape to chew on.
However, he does not like to be caged.
Unlike his ridiculously independent and sensible sister, he is not happy to entertain himself for more than a few minutes. If he’s silent, he’s probably chewing on a charger cable.
He wants to be on things…
… in things
…and up against things.
Mainly whilst shouting. You can see the grim determination, and the happiness spread across his face when he achieves something like pulling himself up on a precarious piece of toddler sized furniture.
He just wants to be running around with his big sister and sooner rather than later if that’s OK with you.
Of course, at six and a half months the kid knows no fear.
By the time my daughter could walk, she had a bit of sense in her – as much as any one year old anyway. A walking baby of eight or nine months is my deepest fear. My daughter would, and still does, hold hands happily. I had reins but never needed to use them.
I think the baby is going to need a full collar and lead soon.
Naturally there is a certain sense of pride when your child hits any milestone. He’s my super baby and he’s just so amazed by life he wants to do it all NOW.
I just can’t help but wish sometimes that he’d put more effort into other skills, such as sleeping maybe, or being a baby and not a mountain goat, or perhaps sitting still.
Even if just for five minutes so I can pee in peace.