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Standing Tall

Goodness, I’ve been crabby lately. I looked over my recent posts yesterday and all I saw was moaning and griping. Who is that sour-puss? The fact is it’s not all bad over here. In fact, the last few days have been wonderful: Simon has been an active, happy little boy and I am delighting in some of his recent advances.

Sometime about two and a half weeks ago, a switch flipped. My happy-to-sit-for-hours baby got tired of sitting. Once he discovered how easy it was to pull up, he started pulling up all the time, and more adventurous cruising followed shortly.

Since we’ve come back from our trip, I’ve hardly seen Simon sit at all. He spends nearly all day, every day standing, squatting, and cruising. He typically sits only long enough to eat, splash in the tub, or have a position to pull himself back up from. Often when he’s not standing, he’s experimenting with crawling (we’re seeing more of this lately) and trying to get up by pushing off of the floor with his hands. If he’s having a quiet moment, he’s more likely to kneel than sit. The only thing Simon likes better than standing or cruising is climbing stairs or kicking a ball.

At eighteen months, Simon has finally decided that he wants to walk, and he’s pouring all his attention and energy into it. While I cannot state what the initial trigger was, we are both reaping immediate rewards from this shift. Simon giggles every time he kicks a ball, and he giggles and grunts every time he ascends or descends a staircase. He’s laughed himself into a fit of hiccups more than once this week.

These developments confer several advantages on me. At the most basic level, I’m less worried about him now. He’s behind, sure, but he’s also developing at a rapid clip. I’ve been referred to a group called First Steps that helps children with developmental delays, but I halfway think he’ll be walking before they complete their evaluation. What’s more, I think any therapy Simon does receive will be welcomed by him now that he wants to progress himself. Before, I worried as much about the intervention as the delay behind it. After all, we can’t want him to succeed more than he does….

There’s a strong aesthetic component to this, too. It sounds silly, but seeing Simon move in new ways is a thrill. He looks adorable when he sticks out his right foot (always the right) to kick a ball, and I love seeing little-boy feet tucked under his bottom when he kneels. Yesterday I helped him walk barefoot across grass, and I was reminded of a similar happy time a year ago when Simon first touched grass with his hands.

In fact, a part of me wonders if Simon deliberately held out until spring, when the rewards all the greater. It certainly is not lost on me that Simon is blossoming at the same time as the world around him.

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