Many parents put a big emphasis on their baby’s first steps. Somehow this seems like a masculine preoccupation to me, more of a “dad” thing than a “mom” thing. I know my dad has probably told me the story of my first steps a thousand times. I don’t know if my mom has even mentioned it once.
All of the hype around first steps led me to think of it as a discrete, definitive moment. Suddenly the baby starts walking! Just like that.
And yet what I’m seeing instead is a tentative and incremental process. Persephone took a single step one day. Another day, another single step. Later we saw her take two steps, extremely halting. Then she’d hunker down and crawl. She did the two-step for a short while. Now she’s up to three steps at a time. Last night I saw her take three steps in a row, three times in a row.
It’s all been great fun, but it’s not what I expected, exactly. Is she walking? Well, yeah, kinda sorta but not really yet.
She’s in the process of learning.
Abe had taken a couple steps before the evacuation but 3 days in a car seat kind of took it out of him. So we’re sitting around at my dad’s a couple weeks later and he just comes waddling around the corner with no warning. It was funny. A dad thing? I don’t know,
But I am real glad I was there to see that.
Everyone told us one day the boy would just start walking. Not the way it happened. He worked at it for weeks, mixing crawling with some steps. One in the last week has he pretty much given up crawling. Sounds like Persephone is doing it that way as well.
I’ve heard of a number of mothers who take more delight in their children’s accomplishments than their Dad’s. This spans generations: my Grandmother was someone who took delight in my Dad being able to walk down the grass alley to pick up an egg from my great-grandmother for his breakfast, and I know a couple in NYC where he isn’t into the “comparing at what age my son accomplished this” but she is… But that’s just the devils advocate in me expressing that women can be just (if not more) competitive about their progeny than their husbands.
In other news, this may or may not resonate.