Take it from your Baby's Queues

This is the first in a series of developmental articles that I will be writing for information.  The article herein is basically an introduction to the worries that most new mothers begin to have when they listen to the anecdotes of other mothers.  Just to let you know, there is no right or wrong way to be a good mommy, as long as you care for your child, nurture their development on their own schedule, and cause no harm to come to them.

I’m sure many of you mothers out there have heard about little Jimmy who could read at the age of 7 months, and Jenny who was walking at the ripe old age of 4 months.  These may very well be true however the anomaly that is the progressively capable baby is not the rule, but rather a very rare exception.  When a mother with a perfectly healthy and intelligent child sees that their bundle of joy is not walking or at least standing by the time they can stick their own finger in their mouth they become distressed and begin to force their children to do things that they are neither physically or intellectually capable of doing at such a young age.

Yes, babies have so many over-active synapses in their little brains that are working overtime trying to learn their own name, the look of their siblings and daddy, and other such tasks.  They are learning to play with their toes and discover that they have tongues.  How cute is it when your baby grabs your finger and looks knowingly into your eyes as though they’ve known forever who you are.

Well, Mommy, it is time to acknowledge some facts about the exceptional children.  Many of them are not exceptional but will begin to feel a great deal of stress involved in their advancements beyond their capabilities.  The competitive nature of motherhood should just leave and love and devotion to caring appropriately for your baby should take the place.

I can attest to a single account where a baby walked much too soon for her tiny little legs.  I am a second child.  My brother taught me to walk around the time I was six months old.  How great for us!  I could toddle around after my big brother, I could learn to wave my body back and forth to the music and I could even sometimes get up on my tippy-toes.  Guess what else?  My bones were not strong enough to carry my pudgy frame and my legs became bowed.  I am not severely bow-legged, however our family pediatrician informed my mom that my legs bowed out naturally because, although I was capable of walking that early, my bones were not solid enough and they began to slightly bend under the weight of me, my clothes, my diaper, and anything I chose to carry at that moment in time.

Developmental milestones are necessary and important but no two children are going to walk at the same chronological time.  Many children learn to talk first, and others learn to memorize very well.  Some children can throw a ball with accuracy while another is able to sing their little hearts out, practically in tune.  All children should be given the stimulus necessary to build upon their own skills, and not pushed to be more than a baby of their age should be.

My next article will address psychological development through the first five years of a child’s life.  There will be cultural differences addressed as well as milestones that each child is expected to reach within the passing years.  Of course nothing is set in stone and all children are different.  The information provided will be a guideline for new mommies to follow.

To read more about your baby's development, read this article.