Offbeat Parenting Milestones
We cover a variety of serious topics on our blog, but every once in a while it is nice to lighten the mood. Today we are exploring the humorous and real side of parenting. It is wonderful when you hear your baby giggle for the first time, when she takes her first step, or utters her first words, but here are 12 milestones that you never knew you would LOVE:
- When he wipes his own bottom. Sure, it is exciting when your little guy shows interest in the potty, and even better when he starts using it consistently, but did you realize you’d continue to accompany him on those trips for a long time to come? The day he can successfully tackle that task independently from start to finish is party-worthy.
- When she learns to pump on the swing. When this clicks for your little one, you get to say goodbye to hours of standing there pushing her back and forth, over and over and over. You just may hear music from the heavens and feel like jumping onto your own swing beside her to celebrate.
- When he can buckle and unbuckle his own seat belt. You’ll recall how fun it is to mess with straps and buckles (sometimes for two or three kids) every single time you stop to run into the store, or post office, or library. And then do it all over again when you get back out. Well, no more! He’s got this now! Your errand-running just became a thousand times easier.
- When she can get her own breakfast without waking you. Even though you are thrilled to wake up to: “Moooom! Daaaaaad! I’m huuuuuungry!” the day will come when you’ll wake up all on your own, rub your eyes, and wonder why she is sleeping in, only to find her happily munching on breakfast that she got all by herself. Yes, there may be some cereal scattered on the floor or some milk on the counter, but you’ll still want to do a cartwheel.
- When he can get across the monkey bars all by himself. No more holding his weight as he struggles, trying not to get kicked in the stomach. Your little monkey is growing up!
- When life no longer depends on the blankie. Or pacifier, or beloved stuffed animal. She has that one thing that is her lifeline, and if you’ve ever misplaced it, you know you’re in a world of trouble, and there will be no peace until it is found. The day will come when it is still loved, but it’s not critical.
- When she can handle her own bath or shower, and actually get clean, including washing her hair. Yes, she may flood the bathroom for the first little while, but eventually, she’ll be able to get the water started, suds up, rinse off, get a towel and dry off without any help from anyone. Oh the rejoicing!
- When he gets up in the middle of the night to go potty without waking you. The night will come when you’ll half-way wake up and think you hear feet, then hear a flush and little steps heading back to bed. In the morning, when the fog clears and you realize what happened, give that kid a high-five and some stickers.
- Their first self portrait. You have never seen a more perfect and beautiful stick figure in your life. Your heart will melt when you see her fingers are as long as their arms, her smiling face has no nose and her spaghetti string hair looks almost like hers does when she wakes up on the morning.
- When he realizes the toilet is not a garbage can or useful for storing toys. It’ll suddenly dawn on you one day that you haven’t fished anything out of there for some time. At last, the phase has passed. Breathe easier.
- When she names her first boyfriend. There are fewer things cuter than a 3-year-old preschooler letting you know she has a boyfriend, or better yet, pointing out the boy she plans to marry (in about 30 years, your brain will add). Of course, the next day she may want to marry her grandpa, but it’s still a fun day.
- When he shows you that he is clearly growing up. This can come in many forms: his first basket, goal, cartwheel, the first time he sounds out a word, or the first time he writes his complete name and it is readable. Perhaps he will reach out to a friend who is hurting, or stand up for someone at school who is being picked on. He may show you that he can be trusted alone for a while, or get up and let the dog out without being asked. Whatever this looks like, you’ll have a moment when you realize your baby isn’t a baby any more. When that happens, cry, laugh, and give him a big hug (while he will still let you).
We could go on and on, but you get the idea. Now it is your turn: what are some of your favorite parenting milestones?
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