Thursday, July 7, 2011


There are many moments in parenting that we joyfully embrace; first smile, first tooth, first steps, solid food, successful potty training, first day of school, first play date, first dance recital, first musical recital, first tooth loss - you get the picture.

When the kids were born five weeks early, we had some developmental concerns. I poured by heart into making sure I provided stimulation, interaction and opportunities for all of their gross, fine, mental and social growth. I may have even gone overboard a bit.

At 9 months old they still weren't sitting up on their own. They'd topple over many times, often frustrated when they didn't know how to sit themselves back up.  I decided to use paint to have them experience cause and effect of large muscle movement in their legs. Dressed only in diapers, I sat them on floor pads with a line of yellow paint on one side of their legs, and red paint on the other side. As they swished their legs in an out, they would see the paint smear into orange. They could see that their leg movement was making a HUGE splash of color.

It wasn't a magic fix - but I we all had fun trying it out. Parenting is the most fun for me when I let them get messy.

Fast forward eight years. The next developmental milestone is independence. My daughter still reaches for my hand whenever we're walking. My son only takes my hand when I ask him - and it's usually because the "free" hand is taken by car keys, briefcase, mommy purse or dog leash. When I have both hands holding one of each child, I am balanced.

I'm not sure how I will feel when either kid tells me that they're too old to hold my hand. Until then, I will cherish every grab, cuddle and hug.


#20 of 90in90 for #LUBlogTribe

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