It’s a good thing kids are durable. I’m often astounded by the resilience of my little guy. In the mere thirteen months of his life, my Jacob has fallen on his head more times than I thought a baby or toddler could take…and countless more than I would like to admit (because that means I didn’t prevent the falls). It occurred to me that infants may not be as fragile as they appear circa his third month, well before I thought he could roll over from his back. Wrong. He rolled right off the bed in our room onto our wooden floor about two feet below. While my husband and I suffered near heart attacks, Jacob hardly cried. Even the doctor said not to worry. It took several days of guilt consuming my entire being (plus a detailed list of renovations my husband was to make immediately– including the removal of our bed frame and the installation of bed rails) until I forgave myself…or at least stopped beating myself up so much about it.
Several months ago when Jacob was first learning to stand, I would sit or kneel behind him and scoot around as he trailed the furniture and walls, stopping only to bounce his pudgy legs and squeal in pride of his new accomplishment, or to plunge backward into my arms. As he began to master falling onto his butt instead of flipping back onto me or his head, I decided he should learn to move through the world without his mama hovering over him just inches away. Since my decision to give him this independence, my eyes never have missed a tumble. Yet, in spite of sudden lunges and determined dives, my frantically flailing arms have failed to block many a bonk of my busy boy’s head. Surprisingly, nearly every time, as I’ve almost passed out from holding my breath and waiting for screams and tears, Jacob has surprised me with a smile, or simply carrying on as if nothing happened.
The last few days have marked the peak of his falls and of my near-fainting experiences. Only recently, I told the story of how my mini-man learned to walk on his own (Jedi-style, with a lightsaber in hand). Well, in less than two weeks since he took his first unsteady steps, my little Yoda has turned to Yoga. His favorite pose is Downward Dog, which he holds amazingly well, often with the added challenge of a book or toy in his hands…until he collapses onto his head. When he is not practicing his Adho Mukha Svanasana, he seems to be training for the 100-yard dash. As if his wobbly walking weren’t enough to make me worry, my son has completely lost interest in the slow speed of sensible strides. He has moved onto sprints, which involve a crash and a giggle from him every few steps. And, me? I’m just trying to breathe…and remind myself of the solid and strong little creature he is. Sigh….