It's time for #whatmomsgoogle where two sleep deprived mom bloggers (myself and the scintillating Shaunacey) team up to answer the questions moms google about pregnancy, babies and small
dervishes children! We
don't promise to be right but we do promise to be real.
|Watching TV? There's a milestone we can accomplish together!|
Ummm... I dunno. I really don't.
I don't know when your baby will smile, lift his/her/their head, roll over, bite you or bark like a dog. I do know, that barring developmental challenges, they will. Oh they will.
|Made Auntie walk for me. #milestone|
I see her morning routine going something like this: Drink coffee. Call mom. Be brilliant. Double check when I got that third tooth. Be more brilliant.
My second daughter, Gabrielle, could only be so lucky. Today, she's 10 months' old and she has six teeth that arrived...already... at some point. She'll have to reference this blog post, I guess. Adversity will only make her more brilliant.
|"Spit it out, Gabby." Too late. #milestone|
See? She's already a vegan.
Here's what I know to be true about baby milestones:
1. Milestone lists give us a frame of reference to let us know that we are okay and that's okay.
The amount of development and change a baby goes through in a year IS mindblowing. We need to know that our babies are heading in the right direction and that list can just let us know that we're on the right track. I'm sure it was a pediatrician who created the milestone list in the first place after the millionth panicked call after hours (LEAVE ME ALONE, MRS. JONES. Check the LIST!).
I don't think I'm a big comparison person but I've found myself googling "words a 10 month old should say" and "when will my baby start" more than I care to admit... publicly... on the internet.
|Made mom want to puke. #milestone|
2. Milestone lists ARE JUST a frame of reference and your child will get there when he/she/they get there.
And now, a tale of two sisters: My firstborn was loved, praised, coddled, coached (by a teacher no less *COUGH*) and assisted through her first year of life. She hit the milestones... whenever she was ready to do so.
My second born was loved, distractedly joggled, toted, brought along with, and continuously frisked for contraband and so far, she's hitting the milestones... whenever she's ready to do so.
Emily's entering preschool in the fall and I was disappointed to note that nowhere on the 72-page application form was I required to state when she began potty training, eating with a fork or manipulatively getting her daily vitamins from both mom and dad. Strange. It's almost as if they don't even care...
|Stole someone else's food. #milestone|
3. They're called milestones for a reason. Celebrate the successes.
Will there be fourteen Facebook videos when Gabrielle dances around the room
for the first time? No. There'll be a full length feature film. Just thank your lucky stars you're not on my family photostream. Current photo count? Likely, 3 billion. Being present to witness and participate in a human learning how to be a human is so so cool. Try to toss the chart. Be a proud parent. You can't love every moment but these are the ones to revel in. Cheer like it's the play-offs. Make strangers compliment your child. It's all part of this weird and wonderful thing that happens to you when you are responsible for a tiny human. Don't miss it referencing a list.
|Pulled out every single wipe. #milestone|
4. You can make your own milestones.
You're the parent so that makes YOU the expert at knowing your child. You get to make the rules so instead of googling whether that spray sunscreen is protecting or silently destroying Baby Bohemian Buttercup, why not draw those crazy eyebrows on Junior and snap some pictures...
|Easy, breezy, beautiful... Defaced baby. #milestone|
Here are a few of mine:
1. The Houdini. Wrestles out of any swaddle or straitjacket.
2. The Streaker. Removes all clothing and diaper.
3. The Bird Bath. Climbs into toilet.
4. The Raven. Captures and hoards small important objects (keys, remotes, credit cards, garage door openers).
5. The Sherpa. Scales the largest piece of furniture in the house.
6. The Garburator. Discovers and devours an inedible object.
7. The Break & Enter. Opens any door and scoffs at baby proofing.
8. The Trust Exercise. Falls off a change table/bed/couch/out the front door (HYPOTHETICALLY) under your watchful eye.
9. The Gangster. Says a very bad word. I recommend exposing your baby to many many people so that you have someone to blame.
10. The Safety Mechanism. Does something really really cute. Babies are absurdly adorable for their own safety. As their outrageous behaviour (the poop, the yelling, oh my!) gets more and more unbearable, the safety mechanisms kick in. The first real hug and kiss (and don't even get me started on the first "I love you, Mom") from that chubby sticky little gremlin somehow makes every single second worth it.
|Destroyed personal property. #milestone|
Whatever baby milestones you choose to memorialize, my last advice to you is to get photographic evidence for future occasions like graduation or wedding days.
|Expressed inner beauty. #milestone|
So when your mind goes to that "Are we there yet" place, I will remind you (as I vehemently expressed to my toddler on a recent roadtrip), "We'll get there WHEN WE GET THERE."
And we'll all get there. Don't sweat the small stuff. Celebrate the successes. Make your own rules. You've got this and so does your little one.
A quick note: If you look up that daunting milestone list and your child is not meeting any or many of the milestones by the recommended age, please talk to your doctor. I in no way mean to make light of challenges individual kids and parents face and you always need to do what is best for you and your child. Rock on, mama.
Now rush over to see what Shaunacey Says.
AND don't forget to come back next week to see how we answer your burning mom questions... or questions about burning something. Whatever.
Click HERE to ask... you know you want to.