Selah didn’t crawl until she was 14 months old. She finally took her first steps two months later. For the first year of her life she just explored the space around her. She had no desire to lay on her belly to try to reach for something. She would play with one toy for hours at a time. She was always happy, content. When I think about baby Selah, I see a little squishy smile and hear a belly laugh. She was dreamy.
All of those extra days I got to cuddle her and carry her, I spent them wishing she could crawl or walk. When, looking back, I had then, what I wish for now. She’s two and half, busy giving her stuffed animals and our family members check ups. She runs around our house building castles like Elsa and jumps on the furniture much more than I like.
She started crawling when she was ready. When she was able. She started walking at her pace, at a time that was right for her. And she didn’t miss out on anything. Honestly, because she lacked skills in gross motor, she gained so much language during that time and still excels in speech. Well beyond “the norm.”
I’ve always had a problem with being normal. It’s honestly one of my biggest fears. What is normal anyway? I don’t even know. But I know there is this push for us moms, for our kids to fit this normal mold. They should dress this way, behave this way, respond this way, do this thing, achieve this by this certain time. There is pressure for us to push them to normal, whatever that is.
While “the norm” helped us identify Selah’s low tone, and eventually led to us giving her resources to help her succeed, often times “the norm” defines our ideas of what is best for our children. When really “the norm” is the last thing we should be concerned with in regards to parenting.
God has made each of our children uniquely gifted for a certain Kingdom purpose. Maybe we aren’t resisting the norm in shepherding little hearts, because this is an area in which we need shepherding. Maybe we have forgotten this for ourselves.
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