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Tunnel Vision

Simon continues to cruise and pull up, but it’s becoming increasingly clear to me that he’s a physically timid child. He’s just not that excited about doing anything he’s not sure he can do pretty well, and he scares easily.

On the other hand, he loves being outside when it’s sunny, so yesterday Matt and I exploited this and took advantage of some reasonably warm, very sunny spring weather by heading off to a park. It’s been a long time since Simon got to swing, but he remembered the fun and giggled like mad all the while Matt and I pushed him. We could have swung all day, but the slide beckoned.

Last summer, Simon would go down the slide on my lap and the results were mixed. Sometimes he thought it was fun, and sometimes he’d look stunned and his lower lip would tremble. Yesterday he liked it off the bat, and Matt and I decided it was time for a solo trip.

I have to say that watching your child discover a new pleasure is a singular joy. We held his hands when he went down a few times, and Simon thought that was a blast. Then we tried to get him to go down solo. Once or twice he pushed himself off and went down completely solo, and once or twice he grabbed onto the side of the slide and went down on his side and at an angle. He appeared to enjoy both methods equally well.

Emboldened by his success and unusually game attitude, it was time for the long tunnel slide. Not being 32″ tall, there was no way I could help Simon on this one. I stood at the top, Matt stood at the bottom, and on a signal I pushed my baby down and hoped he would not summer-sault along the way or arrive at the bottom in a hysterical fit. I think he was a bit stunned, but he was also clearly intrigued. So we tried again. This time the push came harder, he went down faster (a bit too fast I think), and he giggled all the way.

At this point, we sensed we should stop while we were ahead and called it a day. If only we had been so wise later that day, when Matt and I pushed our limits with Simon and were rewarded with a miserable, borderline hysterical boy. I’ll blog about that unpleasant lesson later. time…

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