Just a couple of weeks ago, my baby started army crawling. Yes, he’s now 10.5 months old, but he’s quite a big boy, and I’m convinced that played a part in his lack of mobility up until now. He has always been right on track with everything else, and crawling this late is not outside the normal range, but still, I was very glad that he was finally moving when he started dragging himself across the floor.
Boy oh boy, little did I know what we were in for.
CJ has moved from army crawling to full-on crawling, to climbing stairs and pulling up on everything. He has now started trying to hoist himself over the side of his playpen, and tonight he was trying to figure out how to get on top of the coffee table. He pops up in his crib faster than I can get in there to settle him back down during the night, and once he’s up there’s no hope of getting him back down again. He goes in the bed with us for the rest of the night. But I’m secretly okay with that.
CJ’s new thing is cruising around and walking whilst holding onto our fingers. And today he successfully negotiated going down one step from the living room to the little recess where the front door is located. He is learning more words by the day. Right now he says Momma, Dada, bye-bye, duck, dog, uh-oh, and turtle. He dances, nods, shakes his head, waves, gives five, and hugs us. It is so hard to believe that 10 months ago he couldn’t even control his own facial expressions. Now he smiles, frowns, laughs, pouts, blows raspberries, makes “Indian” noises (you know, where you pat your hand over your mouth), and scrunches his nose with purpose and intent. His little face is so expressive. He takes in everything around him with his wide blue eyes. The boy doesn’t miss anything.
And he is fearless. There is nothing he doesn’t want to do, and he will find a way to do it, get to it, climb on or over it. He would fling himself down the stairs without a second thought if something down them interests him. The only thing he has become slightly leery of are the dogs. They like to hover around him during mealtime in hopes that he will drop some of his food. Sometimes they get too close for his liking, and he yells at them and looks at us with an expression that says, “don’t just sit there, DO SOMETHING!” We are always right there beside him, and the dogs only want to eat his food (and sneak in a few licks), but I think he has realized just how large they actually are and it freaks him out a little. But when we are holding him and the dogs are around, he loves to pet them and get dog kisses. It’s very funny. I guess sitting in his high chair, he feels exposed and vulnerable, but when Momma or Daddy have him, he feels like nothing can touch him.
We will do everything in our power to make sure he feels safe at all times. Some people think that parenthood mellows you, makes you softer. I have found it to be the opposite for me. When CJ was born, instantly I knew that I would do anything to keep him safe and happy. I would die for him. I would kill for him. I would go to the ends of the earth for that child. It is a fierce love, primal even. I would stand down Satan himself to protect my child. Nothing will harm him as long as there is breath in my body. Of that I am certain.
I mean, really. Who wouldn’t do anything for that face?