Today, Evelyn decided she could walk. For a little while now she’s been cruising around using the furniture and walls for support, and for a couple of days she has been taking several unsupported steps.
But today she has been tottering around the house astonishingly well, unhesitatingly leaving the security of a chair to wander the wide wasteland of the living room. She went from the dining table to the study this morning, a straightforward jaunt in a single direction of about seven metres. Later, she took an epic journey, almost completing a circuit of the house, which may not be much further in distance, but involves more turning and thus more effort.
She now seems to see walking as a form of transport equally as useful as crawling, or even more so. Although I must say even her crawling is amazing; she gets up a fair turn of speed, and her bum wiggles madly as she goes. She’s also started getting around on her knees, which I’m not sure whether to call ‘walking on her knees’ or ‘crawling upright’.
Here is a short video of Evelyn walking. It’s not her best effort, but she keeps falling over on camera, then putting in the real miles when the camera isn’t handy.
I’ve gotten used to knowing that my other fully mobile child, Elspeth, also knows how to do things like not fall down steps. But I’d forgotten that babies learn mobility long before acquiring a modicum of common sense. I will have to watch Evelyn very closely now that she’s so free-range, to be sure she doesn’t hurt herself or go missing!
A few weeks ago I finally decided it was time to properly potty train Elspeth. So I said to her, ‘No more nappies during the day, it’s underpants or nothing from now on.’ She threw a tantrum, but I’m bigger than her so I won. And we’ve had remarkably few accidents! She rarely needs reminding or prompting, she goes on the potty by herself, and often asks to use the toilet too. So that’s good!
In the last week or so, Evelyn has figured out crawling! She’s getting around like a champion now, and follows me around the house all the time. She is also starting to babble, making quite a few nice consonant sounds – ‘ba’ and ‘da’ and ‘ga’. She’s done the occasional ‘da-dee’, which Aidan is happy to claim as her first word. There are also some ‘hiyas’ and ‘yeahs’.
I’ve been studying hard and I’ve just about finished my most recent unit – Worlds of Early Modern Europe. Next week I start on the Fall of the Roman Republic.
Evelyn is nearly seven months old, and for the last week or so she’s been managing to get up onto her hands and knees. She’s doing it more often, with more confidence, and I’m sure she’ll be crawling very soon!
It’s a lovely achievement, of course, it’s great to see and it’s an important milestone. But mobility is an added burden to a parent! It means not knowing exactly where your child is, it means needing to put many objects up higher so she can’t reach them, it means an increased risk of accidents and injury. More worries!
She is also sitting up really well now, and I’m confident in leaving her sitting on the floor while I do other things – I no longer need to hover over her ready to catch! I plonk her down and put a few toys within reach, and she has a lovely time. At least until Elspeth steals the toys!