Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Unpeeling the developmental onion

Seeing Hannah and Isabelle standing up next to each other, moving around the house together, is amazing. I don't know who's more excited: them or us. Hannah has been doing SO great with pushing the wagon (she's a little less interested in the walker but as you can see in the picture, she does tolerate it for a little while). I never thought we'd see this day. For such a long time she was too tentative and cautious and disinterested in doing it, and now we just put her behind it and off she goes!

I think when you parent a child who achieves milestones much slower than other kids their age, you are so much more aware of each individual step in the developmnental process. It is painfully slow and trying on even the most patient of people, but it is also magical and mystical and makes you really appreciate how incredible it is that our bodies and minds can do what they do. With Isabelle, we like all parents and were so excited by each step of her development and cheered her on along the way (we still do!) But with Hannah, it's like a slow-motion version that magnifies all of the separate pieces that must come together in order for her to achieve a motor milestone. And not only do we see each one of those pieces so clearly, but we can also see the ripple affect of that achievement because it has been such a long time coming.

Two specific examples: First and most obvious is the sheer and complete joy the girls express when they are both up and about as they are in this photo. They squeal and giggle and are so incredibly excited that finally they can share the perspective of being upright and standing. But another example unveiled itself to me today while Hannah was pushing the wagon into the dining room. When she got next to the staircase, she stopped and put her hand on the banister, tapped it and said, "What's that?" We walk by those stairs several times a day but always with someone holding her and so she knows what the railings of the banister are, but not from the perspective of someone standing upright and walking by it.

How incredible that she is going to start experiencing her world in a whole new way, and because her language skills are so far ahead of her motor skills, she can tell us what that is like. I am so grateful for the opportunity to watch this all unfold.


mom said...

Lovely -- and twinmama, what a good storyteller you are. You capture just the right details to make us feel there -- so literary!

Anonymous said...

I agree, your story's are amazing. I'm so proud of you for doing this!