So Nathan has really been practicing his new walking skillz lately. A few days ago, he started taking the initiative to walk… so he no longer waits for me to prompt him or play our usual psychological warfare games in which I attempt to manipulate him into thinking that something he is hellbent on not doing is actually fun and worthwhile. Remember the whole saltine crackers episode? That is just one example of me having to convince him that it was his own idea to do something. For the longest time, he wouldn’t eat anything but pureed foods… if I DARED to put something solid on his tongue, he would open his mouth and scream so loud that I swear it could have woken the dead. But I sat down and happily devoured handfuls of saltine crackers, and once he saw how good I thought they were, he decided to give them a try himself. And we just went from there. I introduced a new food here and there, and each time, I would eat it first in front of him, pretending it was The Best Thing I Have Ever Eaten. Without fail, Nathan would be straining to grab it out of my hands with his slobbery little fingers. Because it is so not fair that Mommy gets to enjoy all these delicious foods while he doesn’t. According to Nathan, anyways.

So with the whole walking thing, I think I have finally convinced him that walking is the Most Awesome Activity Ever. And by golly, he is starting to love it! I tell Nathan to walk to Mommy, and he does this little dance where he jumps up and down without actually jumping, then he’ll smile a big toothy grin, and then he will walk his Little Drunken Sailor saunter. Sometimes he looks like he’s trying to walk on a small boat caught in a storm in the middle of the ocean, but hey, practice makes perfect. He’ll take a few steps, wobble around precariously while flapping his hands in an effort to maintain his balance, then will right himself and take a few more steps. He’s taking between 5-10 steps at a time now, and I even encouraged him to walk halfway across his room just the other day! In order to get him to take those wobbly steps, I used to have to sit on the floor, hold my arms out, and say “Come here, Nathan! Walk to Mama!” But now? Now, he does it on his own, wobbly legs and all.

It’s bittersweet so see him gain his independence. On one hand, it’s great because it means less bending over to pick him up and carry him, which means LESS BACK PAIN. On the other hand, however, MY BABY IS GAINING HIS INDEPENDENCE. He no longer needs me to do everything for him. He’s growing up, and these moments where he is so little are quickly passing us by.

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