Tuesday, September 15, 2009

When Do You Stop Calling Them Babies?

            My baby is practically walking now. She’s confident on her feet, and can take a handful of steps at a time. She can also go down the slide by herself. Yes, it is indeed a bit scary for a new parent.
            Many parents have told me, “There’s no rush for your kid to walk,” and I’m starting to realize why. The kid’s going to walk soon enough, why open that can of worms sooner than you need to? When they do start walking it ushers in a whole new era of parenthood. In an instant the child moves from walking to running, and then from running to running into things, and of course all the accompanying concussions, bruises, and bleeding. Parents suddenly must become super heroes, able to prevent crash-collisions with a single leap, able to keep an eye on their children even when they’re at their busiest, able to prevent the unpreventable.
            A friend recently asked me, “When do you stop calling them babies?”
            I thought about it a second, then said, “It’s when they start walking. They become toddlers.”
            Not that I really know. I was just thinking of which room you take your kids to during church. There’s the “Nursing Room” for babies, followed by the “Toddler Room” for the rampaging walkers, and finally the “Classrooms” for kids who can talk.
            I’m afraid that when Celia’s a bit more confident on her feet, she’ll find ways to slip away from us. She definitely is an exploratory-type kid. In all honesty, it can be daunting at times thinking about it. Already Michelle is getting really tired, I can tell. Yesterday, before we went to bed, I told her she needs to figure out how to take a break from baby duties during the day. Swap with friends. Drop off Celia somewhere. Whatever it takes. It’s not just a lack of sleep, but being constantly aware and on the guard that can tire a person out.
            I just hope Celia is the type of kid who has relatively few major accidents and wanders into strange territory as little as possible.
            Well, whatever she’s like, we’ll soon find out. There’s no stopping this kid from growing. So… onward to the next stage! (I’ll have to go find a nifty superhero outfit)

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