As a new mom I have experienced milestone mania and anxiety because of the same. I have found that there is extreme importance put on your baby meeting milestones in a timely manner. My doctor has a program that you log onto and you take the quiz to se if your baby has done the things that are “age appropriate”. Every time I get ready to take the quiz I get anxiety. Are my babies okay? Are they doing everything that other babies their age are doing? They haven’t done that yet? Is something wrong with them?
I guess a big part of my anxiety stems from the fact that I know nothing about babies. So, I constantly question am I doing enough to engage their abilities. Do I give them enough floor time? Did I give them enough tummy time? Should I show them how to crawl? Should I show them how to pull up?
Another part of my anxiety stems from the fact that Gabe was born with a prolapsed umblical cord. They had him pumped with oxygen from the second he came out. So, we always question whether he had lost any oxygen. If he was born without a hitch like Noah we probably would not worry so much.
In the beginning the babies seemed to excel at their milestones. They smiled appropriately, they rolled from their tummies to their backs quickly and they were really good with their hands. They passed toys back and forth with ease. Then things started to slow down. It took them awhile to find their feet and to roll from their backs to their tummies. Even now they are almost ten months and Noah is just now trying to crawl on his hands and knees. Gabe isn’t even really trying yet. They aren’t pulling up yet and they aren’t getting into the sitting position on their own. In fact Noah is on a sit strike. As soon as he started to try to crawl he refused to sit. I find myself and my husband saying you only have a couple of weeks to crawl. Where did we get this deadline? At our last doctor’s visit she told us she wasn’t concerned about them not doing these things until they are 10.5 months. So, there’s our deadline.
This is where it gets confusing, the boys were born at 35 weeks. Five weeks early, so in a sense we can calculate the meeting of deadlines based on their “adjusted age”. So, in real time the babies are 42 weeks but if you go by their adjusted age they would be 37 weeks. So, you can determine milestones by their adjusted age.
What I have really found is that my babies do things when they are damn ready to. I tried to force them to find their feet. I would pull them up to their face and make happy sounds. They just looked at me like I was crazy. Then I would help them roll over from their backs to their tummies. This would just enrage them. Then one day they just started to do both. I can see Noah try to crawl and he screams at the fact that he isn’t coordinating his legs with his arms. He wants to do it so bad and he gets frustrated that he is so close but not quite there. I think these babies will be just like their mommy and daddy. I do not like to be told what to do. Not in the sense that I have insubordination issues, it’s just if someone tells me I need to do something a certain way it makes me not want to do it at all. I want to do things my way. I think my husband is a little bit of the same. I see this in my bubs. They just aren’t ready to crawl or pull themselves up yet. But tomorrow they could wake up and be ready. Does this mean that I am not going to help foster their growth and help them? Absolutely not. Noah tries to pull himself up on me and I allow him to. It’s just I am not trying to force something he is not ready to do yet.
People ask all the time: “Are they crawling yet?” And I respond not yet. And they will say back it will happen, almost in a pity voice. I find myself retorting they were born 5 weeks early, they have time. But when you look at a wide range of babies you will find that no baby starts walking at the same time. They can start super early or well past a year. There is so much pressure on something that you just cannot control. I feel like it is just another reason for mothers to be shamed. There are so many other pressure points and things to worry about than putting so much emphasis on whether your baby will meet the milestone at the exact point that “they are supposed to”.
I know the milestones are their in case their needs to be early intervention for something that may be wrong. My point is just that there is too much pressure in some instances where there does not need to be.
Anyone else’s babies take their time in developing?