A week from now Lola will turn 9 months. 9 months! The day before yesterday I had a moment where my head was racing with all of the things I had to do and then something came over me and said “Stop. Just hold your baby.” So I did. Instead of putting her down after she had fallen asleep in my arms I stared and got lost in her eyelashes, her chubby fingers, and the two top teeth that are on their way down.
I reflected on all of the things Lola has done in the (almost) 9 months she has been with us, each one of them so special given the fact that we still pinch ourselves wondering if this is all real. My little firecracker is on the move; she’s reaching and rolling like crazy. What she isn’t doing is crawling.
Whenever I talk to people and they inquire about Lola they ask if she is crawling. I respond that she isn’t and they say “She’s not crawling yet” or “She still isn’t crawling?” Because perhaps they didn’t hear me the first time. Most people assume that she isn’t crawling because I hold her all of the time and while I do hold her frequently, she spends plenty of time on the floor. When she was smaller she hated tummy time but the older she gets the less she resists it. The difference is now, when she is over being on her tummy she rolls. And how I love to watch her roll, especially when she is rolling to get something she wants to play with. She smiles and giggles until she gets to her destination. All the while, my heart smiles and sometimes I giggle a little bit too.
I don’t like to use words like yet or still when describing my baby. Of course, there are times when I do but sometimes those words place us and our children in boxes. It paints a picture that something is wrong if our baby isn’t doing the same thing as another baby their age. And instead of focusing on things like eyelashes and chubby fingers we can fall into the comparison trap by dwelling on milestones.
It is important to remember that the saying “every baby is different” is a saying for a reason. Similar to grownups children do things in their own time. Rather than engaging in a discussion with someone on crawling and the designated window for when it typically occurs, I could be down on the floor immersed in her giggles, babbling with her or seated with her nestled in my arms because the day will come when she won’t fit in them.
My child has a distinct personality. She is her own little person and as I have said before she dances to the beat of her own drum and for now, until she decides to do anything differently, she rolls to the beat of her own drum too.