Every time the baby goes to the doctor, they ask about milestones. These are things he should be doing at certain ages. It went from making eye contact to sitting up to rolling over to crawling. Recently, we have met and passed the pulling himself up to stand milestone.
Tracking these standard milestones is fine, but it’s disappointing that the doctor doesn’t seem to care about the entertaining stuff our baby is doing. Our baby has passed a lot of other milestones too.
The High five milestone
Our baby is quite advanced in his high five skills. Maybe a lot of 10-month-olds can give a high five when prompted, but our child initiates the high five. He holds up an open hand and gives you that look that says, “Daddy Dog, can a baby get some skin?”
He is satisfied with all the high fives he gets in response. But if you make a “chit” noise with your mouth, to exaggerate the sound of two palms striking each other, he will reward you with a lovely smile and probably make you one of his regular high five buddies.
For a while, he even experimented with the fist bump, to which the proper sound effect was a tongue click. In the end, he found this activity overly pretentious and less sincere than the high five.
The Don’t go to any trouble; I can serve myself milestone
This is a milestone that all breastfed babies probably achieve. It’s odd that the doctor never asks about it because it is a good measure of ingenuity and coordination. Our baby met this milestone some time ago, but it seems like he keeps getting more nimble and insistent.
Babies learn to know where their bread is buttered. Though they may be eating other foods, there is still nothing like a fresh brewed pot of milk. Our baby has perfected the art of grabbing hold of one of nature’s milk jugs with both hands, while turning himself sideways across his mother and diving directly at the spigot. The turning maneuver he can accomplish without using his arms. This lets him keep his eyes, and his hands, on the prize.
The I understand that something nasty just went down inside my diaper milestone
This is another universal milestone that doctors should ask about, but don’t. It shows the development of awareness and an appreciation for social awkwardness. Younger babies can do all sorts of mischief inside their diapers without batting an eye. That bubbling cauldron of goo is no concern of theirs.
You know your baby is developing some self-awareness when a bottom-side blowout makes him freeze in place and stare at you with wide eyes, even before his big brother yells out, “Daddy, the baby just ripped a hole in his diaper!” The baby knows he’s absolutely tearing it up. What he doesn’t yet know is whether he should be proud or ashamed of it. Hence, the wide, questioning eyes.
Don’t worry, baby. In a year or two, your brother will have taught you that the sound your butt just made is the most hilarious noise in the world. There is nothing to do but laugh, and try to blame it on him.