I talked a little bit about the big changes that Ollie would be taking in after Tucker was born and how much I was worried he wouldn’t dig it.
In a nice surprising twist, the kind that Ollie excels at, Tucker’s arrival seems to be just the motivator Ollie needed!
Since Tucker was born and we started life as our upgraded family, Ollie has been taking on new challenges and conquering them in pure Ollie fashion: fast and furious. Perhaps this is his way of growing into his Big Brotherhood and leaving behind his extended babyhood. Or maybe he was just ready and I don’t need to find a reason behind it.
Just three weeks after Tucker was born – and just one week before his second birthday – our little buttscooter scooted his last scoot, he slid his last slide. He is now officially a WALKER!
Can I say it again?
Okay, that’s enough.
To be able to write that is pure joy on my part. I’ve been putting off writing a post about it because I can’t quite put into words how absolutely awesome this is. Seriously. When you see your almost two-year-old still unable to walk and perfectly content not walking, you kinda start wondering what’s up.
In the weeks leading up to Tucker’s birth, Ollie was juuuust starting to get up his gumption and take a step not hanging onto anything. Just the small space between the ottoman and the couch, he’d step, apprehensively, and we’d applaud, happy he was at last finding his get-up-and-go.
And then Tuck was born and my parents suspected he might start walking while we were still in the hospital. Still step-by-stepping one bit at a time, he practiced his balance and he started using his hands and feet to get up to a standing position on the floor. Standing independently, balancing himself, he seemed pretty proud of himself. And I thought that might be enough for him for awhile.
BUT I WAS WRONG!
He waited until everyone was home from the hospital and one night he just took off. We started him off by having him “go by Dada!” and he’d cruise along the ottoman to get to Matty, then Matty would say “go by Mama!” and he’d do the same thing to get to me. Eventually this game got him going enough that he found the bravado to let go of the ottoman to get to his destination before we were done saying it.
Then at some point, he was just going. He walked to the tv, holding onto nothing, then headed over by me, and then the big window, then his play table and back by Matty. Then he’d do the route again and again; he seemed pretty surprised with himself for getting going, and for staying upright when he thought he might fall but caught himself. And oh, my goodness, how I’ve been waiting for that drunken zombie walk that toddlers do!
And he hasn’t stopped. It’s so unbelievably awesome, I can’t even say.
I love love love getting him up in the morning and putting him down to walk out to the living room!
I love love love following him around the house!
I love love love letting him walk out to the car by himself!
I just love that he’s catching up to his peers in such a great big fat enormous way! And is able to show his personality a little bit more!
He remembers things that he forgot on his way to places. As a buttscooter, his hands were full or it was too much trouble for him to go back to get something, so this is new. He’ll get halfway to the kitchen to eat lunch before he remembers he wanted to bring a toy, so he’ll turn around, search the room and go get the truck, car, telephone, whatever he wants to bring along. One afternoon after nap, he forgot his snuggle blanket that he likes to bring out with him. He reached the living room, looked around, realized he forgot his blanket and went alllllll the way back to his bedroom to get it, grinning all the way back. He’s doing that hilarious toddler “dance” now, waving his arms and shaking his little patootie in a way that only a toddler can “dance” without being shy. Any song will get him going if you just ask, he’ll show you his fantastic moves.
…and just in time apparently.
We surprised one of his physical therapists (we had two for awhile, PT twice a week, gah!) who, after seeing him finally walking, commented that she was about to recommend one of those pediatric walkers that go behind the kid and has wheels. Just to get him upright and mobile. There was never anything wrong with him, just that his muscles didn’t want to cooperate with each other, but the idea of being thisclose to having a pediatric walker made me realize how significantly delayed he was. Nope, it wasn’t the PT twice a week, the OT once a week, or the lack of interest in walking that made me realize how delayed he was, it was the suggestion that he might have needed a walker in a couple weeks.
Dang, Ollie, you really dodged a bullet there, dude.
But all of this worry is in the past! Was-was-was-was delayed in walking. Not anymore!
In fact those same physical therapists have mentioned more than once that his walking skills are much more advanced than someone who’s only been walking a month or two. Can he walk backwards? YES! Yes he can! Within a few days of taking off, he’s walked backwards the entire length of the living room. Can he walk side-step, walking sideways while keeping his head forward? YES! Yes he can! Allll those months of cruising along the couches reinforced that ability and he’s a pro at that already. Does he spin? YES! Yes he does! Does he kick a ball? YES! Yes he can! He steps over thresholds, he squats down to pick things up, he uses his stool to boost himself. YES! Yes! YES! Does he snatch your remote control and walk as quickly as possible in the other direction? YES! Yes he does!
He may only be walking for a month or so, but he’s already so good at it that we’ve cut back to PT only once a week again. I don’t know what else she can do for him, our main goal for her was to get him sitting and walking and we’ve got those two tasks crossed off his To-Do List.
What’s next? Running? Hopping? Going up stairs? Going down stairs? I don’t know how typical baby development goes, but it might just be vacuuming.
He’s pretty fantastic, this kid.