You can’t, you won’t, and you don’t stop

When Gus had his six month pediatrician visit she said a few things that really stuck out to me. First, when talking about sleep, she said if we wanted to do any sleep training we had to do it right then or wait until he was about 15 months because between 9 months and 12 months things happen so rapidly that it is unfair to kiddos to try to do sleep training. The second thing she said was that Gus was going to hit gross motor milestones early and to not be worried about other stuff – he was spending all of his brain energy doing that.

That appointment was a month ago and those things all make sense now. Last week he started crawling. It started with a few crawls and a lot of pulling himself around army crawl style. Then, all of a sudden, he was able to sit up from laying down. This week he is doing more actual crawling because he realized that he can better change positions from that stance. He’s also pulling himself up on things. He’s not super sturdy but he can do it. He’s been cruising us when we are laying down with him but yesterday cruised a chair.

Last week he also got his first tooth. (Big week!) Yesterday we noticed the second is coming in. He handle the first one well and is doing okay with the second although last night was a rough night (he also got a shot yesterday though so maybe that was some of it). He’s had no fevers, no major signs of pain, and minimal disrupted sleep.

There are things he can’t do as well. We printed out the 9 month ASQ (Ages and Stages Questionnaire) and filled it out so we know what kind of things we should be looking for him to do in the next couple of months. He’s actually got most of it down but a few things stood out to us: 1) His fine motor skills are not quite there. He can do many of the things asked (like pick up a string) but has trouble with the pinching motion for food. I think he still scores fine but we’d love to see that improve. 2) He talks A LOT but I don’t feel he is close to word communication. The other day he said “doggie” but he repeated it after me. I don’t count words until he is using them to communicate. So we’re working on labeling things more when talking to him (“See the doggie? Look at that doggie!” “Kitty!” “Is that your kitty?”) 3) Clapping. It asked if he claps. We had never shown him clapping. Clearly doing that now.

The fourth thing is a bit odd. It asks if he responds appropriately when you tell him “No”. I’m really struggling with this one. I hate the idea of the first word he understands being “no”. But we talked about it and can’t come up with a good alternative. When he is hair pulling or hitting me in the face then I need to tell him no. He needs a command that is understandable to all situations. I wish there was a better alternative but I can’t find it. So this week, we sadly started telling him “no.”

But for the most part he continues to soar. I didn’t really understand this about babies – It’s not like they can crawl and then three months later they can walk. They can crawl and then after that they spend ever waking hour working on walking. We’ve hit the point where there are not breaks between development, just a kid who is braining so hard to get to what is next.

We’re a little terrified.

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Posted on May 15, 2015, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. That’s awesome that he is meeting so many of those milestones…here’s the thing with the word no…as an early childhood educator, we learned that when children are between the ages of 0-18 months, it’s important for them to learn what it means when you tell them no. It’s universal. They understand it and what it means. After they get it (usually they will start saying it), you should substitute “No” with positive language. If he’s pulling the dogs tail at 8 months, you can say, “no, gus, not nice. that hurts doggie”…later on you can say, “Doggie doesnt like that Gus”, he’ll understand that it implies no pulling the tail. So don’t feel bad about saying no to him. He’s still learning what it means, and then implementing positive language or alternate language works best.

    • Thanks! That makes sense- now start with “No” and give a reason and then when he has a better understanding we can just go to reason. The universalness is where i know it’s important and it would be nice to attept to get him to stop slapping me in the face. πŸ™‚

  2. The no thing is a rough one for me too. One thing that I took from my brother and sister in law was the idea of a hard no, meaning using no particularly with reference to things that may be dangerous or can hurt others. When I’m going to tell Darwin no I ask myself if it fits those criteria. If not I try to come up with another option. For example, I’m not telling her not to feed the dog (so exciting!) I’m putting the dog on tie down when I feed Darwin. When she tries to pull the cat’s tail it’s a gentle but consistent no. This is, of course, my ideal. I think I’m managing it about 50% of the time so far…

    • Yeah, i think that’s what we’re shooting for. I’m big on natural consequences- as long as it’s not hurting him or someone (or something) else i really don’t care. I’m just watching when i say it and why.

  3. Also, loving that smile! Gus is going to take Darwin down, she’s trying so hard to crawl but is still days away I think!

  4. That face! Glad he’s doing well with his milestones and hopefully eases up on hitting and hair pulling! I recently spent a few days having my tongue ring nearly ripped out, not fun!

  5. My Love is by far the most brilliant, creative, analytic, adventurous and well-grounded person I have ever met. (And I don’t just say that to curry her favor.)

    Her mother says that my Love’s first word was, “Don’t”, because she heard it so often.

    Small dataset, but there’s at least one datapoint that suggests that it won’t cause serious damage.

    PS: Gus is seriously cute! I love that checked shirt!

  6. Sounds like he is hitting all the milestones necessary for development, that’s awesome! And he’s adorable to boot!

  7. Git it little Gus!

  8. Clapping, talking, and the pincer are all pretty advanced for 6 months. Your doing the right thing encouraging it and modeling, but don’t be alarmed if it doesn’t come for another month or so. Brian’s pincer was okay at 6 months, but it wasn’t until 8/9 when it became more refined. Clapping I think was 9 months (he doesn’t do it much) and talking is nothing. Well other than calling me dad, of course he started that again lol. And he just started crawling a week before turning 10 months (he had been cruising first). So Gus sounds on the ahead side of the milestones, which is awesome! He seems like such a happy guy.

    I didn’t know there was a period of time not to do sleep training. We just successfully (don’t jinx it Bec!) did sleep training at 9 months. I’ll post about it soon.

    • Oh yeah, i’m not at all worried about these things. We still have a month and a half until 9 months. I just like knowing what we should be helping him learn. It occured to me writing this that it’s becoming less about keeping him alive and more about helping him grow and develop which is so strange. He picked up some peas today pinching- not refined but he got them. πŸ™‚
      Excired to hear about your sleep training adventures!

  9. I love the 6-9 month age, everything is so new and exciting! I think that’s also when their personalities really start to shine.
    I should have used ‘no’ more when Ali was little, we have really struggled with it now that she’s older. First kid mistake, right?

  10. Gus, I just really love your face. It’s so damn charming. πŸ™‚

  11. He’s so adorable! It’s no joke, 9-12 months seems to be like one giant milestone. I need to do a few blog updates myself, but some days it’s like we have a full blown toddler on our hands.

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