Thursday, September 28, 2006

A Sticker for Each Milestone

Now that my daughter is walking well, I am feeling a little
depressed. What other milestones do I
have to look forward to? Sure, she’ll
start talking soon enough and that will be great but talking is a gradual
process. There is really nothing else,
other than potty training, that is an immediate accomplishment. 

I waited with bated breath for my daughter to take her first
step for months. I worried that she was
developmentally delayed or had some type of neuromuscular disorder. I called my doctor and asked whether I
should be concerned. He gave me immense
comfort when he said, “we don’t really worry about that until they are 15
months old.” 15 months came and went
and still, she would not walk. My
torment increased. Finally, last week,
she decided to walk. She took her first
step with sturdy deliberateness. This
week she is walking everywhere. She has
reached the pinnacle of the evolutionary chart and decided that walking upright
is her preferred mode of transportation. 

As I pondered my daughter’s newfound ability and her
graduation from major baby milestones, I realized that I had never documented
her first step. After all of that
waiting and worrying, I did not even write down the date that she started
walking. What an inadequate parent I am. How could I have forgotten to do that? 

My reputation for
keeping track of baby milestones is less than stellar. Both of my children’s baby books are a
barren landscape of unanswered questions. 

“What was your baby’s
first word?” I think it was “Mama”

“When did your baby
blow her first kiss?” Blank

And my personal
favorite, “Fill in the chart of your baby’s teeth with the date that he/she got
each one.” Are you kidding?

I was so thrilled when
I discovered a new kind of baby book for my daughter. It is in the form of a simple calendar and comes with stickers
for each milestone. Score! Finally, a true product of the proclivity of
generation X. You don’t actually have
to write anything. You just find the
sticker that matches your milestone and place it on the appropriate date. Genius! Unfortunately, the calendar was not made for late walkers. I guess the sense of entitlement that we
(gen-Xers) so infamously possess has seeped into our product development. We just assume that all children will fit
into the same mold and have every milestone marked off within 13 months. So, alas, my daughter’s first step will not
be documented with a sticker. What a
tragedy. I’ll actually have to write it


  1. Well, I'm glad I'm not the only mom out there who found it completely ludicrous that both my girls baby books had this chart on which I am supposed to document each tooth's appearance in chronological order. Who is the copy editor that sits around thinking up these new & exciting ways to torture us over-eager moms out there? Now, I must footnote that I did indeed fill in the blanks for Ashlyn's chart...with phony dates that I pulled out of the air while on a very long road trip last month. My name is Angie, and I am a serial baby book date fudger.

  2. Angie-
    I made some guesses when I filled out my son's baby book. I didn't even attempt the teeth, though. Really, how much relevance is that going to have later in life? It's not like I'm going to look at his baby book on his wedding day and think, "Awe, remember when he got his 1 year molars?"
    I'm a less a baby book date fudger and more a baby book date omitter. I guess that makes YOU the better Mom :)

  3. OK, this is how it works, after all the guilt and worry your kids put on you by waiting to do developmental duties for as long as they possibly can, I think it's your responsibility to put down dates in your progress book that are totally unattainable, like all teeth in by 13 months and running marathon races by 7 months. This way, when the pressious darlings get to be parents they can wonder whats wrong with their babies and you can get the revenge that you deserve muhahahaha!!!! That will teach the little rug rats for torturing you!!! Now, this message will erase in 35 seconds and you will have no proof that I ever said this to pass on to my lovely grandbabies, and let me tell you missie, you better never make up any stories like this to tell those little darlings about their Papa Dale

  4. I just permanently etched this comment in my mind and plan on sharing it with all of the grandchildren of Papa Dale when the time is right. Or, I could just use it as blackmail to get some projects done around the house (Papa Dale is a contractor).

  5. Julianne, How funny. I did the same thing with Gabriela. I just realized this morning that I did not write down the date of her first steps. She too is all over the place now. From 0 to 60 in less than two weeks. I do know it was the same day that Greyson used the potty for the first time...unfortunately I forgot to write that date down as well. I think I will just pick Sept. 11th as the day and record that. It will be nice to have a positive memory for that date.

  6. Great idea about September 11th, Toni! I might have to steal that one from you. I also like Angie's idea that you just take it out every once in a while and write in random dates :)