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Article: Not Sitting Pretty

andrea richards

Not Sitting Pretty

My baby is struggling again down there on the floor. She grunts and groans and rolls back and forth from her back to her belly. Once she's on the belly, she pushes with all her might on those stuffed sausage arms and does a mini push-up, holding her head high and using all of the muscles in her torso, which looks a lot like a sumo wrestling costume. (It's humbling that my 4-month-old has far better abs than I ever will.) While in her push-up, she works to get her uncooperative legs beneath her, but they flop around like fish. People watch her with amazement, thinking she's trying to crawl. It isn't true. She's way too little for that; what she wants, desperately, is to sit up. But her body is still too much jelly and instantly collapses when she tries. Sitting is one of the first big developmental "milestones," and I'll admit, I'm not excited about it. Even though her sitting up would make my life easier, with her being my second child, every time she enters a new stage, I think about how it might be the last time I ever witness it with one of my own. Call me sick, or maybe just sleep deprived, but I hate leaving behind the lovely newborn phase (which we dubbed "the grub worm") when all babies do is sleep, eat, cry and occasionally smile (probably because they have gas, but also because, as my partner is convinced, they love you the most). Once babies can sit, a whole new world opens up to them. They can observe better, grab stuff easier and play with people and objects for much longer periods of time. It's the first, tiny taste of parental obsolescence. Of course, the new sitter will topple over with no warning, which is the major downside and shows they still need us around, or at least a good number of pillows about. And they don't just fall out when they get tired, they do it when they get bored, like, "Hey, this plastic butterfly that makes the crunchy sound of candy being unwrapped is no longer interesting to me-I think I'll just fall over and see what else is on the floor." Can you imagine falling over just because you've lost interest in something? Office floors would be littered with bodies. Sitting. It isn't pretty but we've got to let people do it. Even if your baby isn't sitting pretty, your little one will be sleeping pretty with a collection of sweet, soothing lullaby renditions. :) Pick up one you love today for the one you love!

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