Jan 21, 2011  •  In Claire, Motherhood, Parenting, Personal

Milestones, Schmilestones

I have a love/hate relationship with weekly emails from BabyCenter.

If you are pregnant, or are a parent, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

By this week your baby is…

And you read on to feel smug if your baby has already reached that milestone/developmental stage, or you are ashamed and feel like the worst parent in the world if your baby shows no signs of doing what they are supposed to be doing.

While I like reading these emails to see where most average babies are at this point in Claire’s life, I also sometimes feel like crap because she shows no signs of rolling over (which should’ve happened two weeks ago) and refuses to reach out for toys or even grab them (which should’ve happened last week).

I try my best to assist her. When she is on her stomach during tummy time, grunting and flailing her arms and legs, I place her limbs where they should be and flip her over to show her how it is done. Then I’ll flip her back as if to say, “Now you try.”

I wave toys in front of her…well, anything that seems to grab her attention and pull her arm out to set her hand on the object of interest. I place toys in her hands and position her little fingers in a grasping hold. And what does she do? She will pull her arm back and give me a look that plainly states, “Why are you doing that? I liked my arms and hands where they were.”

I know that every child develops at different rates, and that I should not worry unless the doctor gets concerned. But everytime I get those emails from BabyCenter, I let out a sigh and begrudgingly read what my child “should” be doing this week. Because if I don’t inform myself, how can I be prepared for other mommies who will inevitably ask about (and judge) my baby’s milestones? And will I ever have bragging rights aside from the fact that she was able to hold her head up just one day after she was born?

Then I remind myself that I am better than that. I know my child best, and I know that she will do these things when she is ready, not when some website says so.

And the next time a mom brags to me about her child’s early milestones, I can just retort, “Will you be bragging about your kid getting pubes early too?”

13 Responses to “Milestones, Schmilestones”

  1. LHR:

    Claire is getting chunky! So cute.

    My son was always behind. He didn’t walk till almost 16 months old. I know boys are usually slower to do things too.

    In any case, none of it really matters. He’s perfectly normal and I’m betting a genius too. :)

  2. cml:

    blah my daughter is 5 months old and still cant rollover. i told my husband lets hope its cause she’s gonna have big boobs and she doesnt want to squish it yet.

  3. You’re right, all babies are different. I hate comparison between mothers.

    Claire is a beautiful baby!!

  4. Vir:

    Schmilestones is right! K was/is always about a month behind those emails, but I know she’s coming along just fine. And lol to the pubes!!!

  5. Just make sure she’s potty trained by 15 months, m’kay?

  6. Haha, loved your comeback at the end. They’ll be the parents stressing when their kid hits puberty super early!

  7. Two things:

    Abby didn’t roll over for the longest time (way beyond when she was “supposed to”), and now she can out-crawl every baby her age. Babies develop in spurts on their own schedules.

    And I once heard the parent of a kid that I taught say to his homeroom teacher, “… and he just came running in crying, saying, ‘I have hair down there!’ So I looked and — sure enough! — there were four little hairs!”

    So yes, there are some people that brag about their kid’s pubes.

  8. Claire is so adorable!! :3

    My son is less than 2 weeks old and already I have smarty pants people telling me what he should and shouldn’t be doing. He’s a flipping newborn people. I should be happy he’s peeing and pooing regularly. I will be forced to use the pubes line from now on!

  9. Haha, that is an epic retort! I know the BabyCenter love/hate relationship too well so now that I am on baby #2 I’ve done away with it altogether. I’d rather go by instinct than an email =)

  10. Hahaha. Funny retort! Well, my little Creature is squarely, utterly average…in weight, length, and milestones. So he’s not really ahead, just on track. And I hear boys are slower to develop in some things, including verbal skills, so I’m just grateful he’s totally average. I get the emails, too, from Babycenter and it helps me track things that I would have no clue about otherwise. But I’m always relieved to read in books like Dr. Spock and What to Expect 1st year that it’s not a big deal if your kid doesn’t reach a milestone…it’s just an average and there’s always a range or spread, so…you’re good not to worry about it. I’m not going to, either!

  11. Grayson hasn’t rolled over yet, either. He’s close, but I’m perfectly happy with his progress.

    We have much more important things to worry about – his sleep & eating schedule have been totally thwarted since he had one of those mental leaps a few weeks back. He’s up twice a night again. :( And at 5 months, they’re “supposed to be over that.” We’ve started CIO slowly, but it’s a looong process.

    I say let our babies be late bloomers. If the docs aren’t concerned, neither am I. :)

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