Q: You mentioned that Verity has begun to turn into a toddler. How can you tell?
A: The changes in our Verity-girl over the past month have been remarkable.
She is more physically motivated, trying harder to move her body. Not long ago, if someone else held her and I told her to come to me, she would simply hold out her arms. Now she lunges! Last week, she finally had the courage to move from a sitting position down to her belly the right way all by herself! She’s been working hard on that for months, and we’re so proud of her! We’ll keep working until her technique is perfect every time, but we are celebrating her willingness to try that move without our help!
She is more interested in and interactive with the world around her, even when we are not directly engaging her attention. Not long ago, we still needed to constantly work to keep her from spacing out. Now she gets restless and wants to do something. She will look around for something to play with and chew on, jabber about things, get our attention. She loves to be right in on the family action! This new motivation helps her so much when we are giving her intensely focused learning time.
In subtle ways that are hard to pinpoint and articulate, she is more aware, more perceptive, more responsive, and more communicative than she was just a month ago. I am more sure that she understands what we are expecting of her. For instance…
I had given up nursing completely over a month ago when she chomped down hard with her sharp little tooth every time I tried it. I wasn’t positive she understood my attempts to stop her, and didn’t want her to associate nursing with “stern Mommy.” I thought (and told some of you), that our nursing days were probably over for good at this late date.
But because of her recent gains in cognitive competence, I had a strong notion that she would understand me if I tried again.
So one evening, I gave her an opportunity. And another one the next morning. And then again the next morning…
<smooch, smooch, sweet baby muffin>
Our little smart girl understood right away what she was supposed to do! She can nurse like she never did before!