Friday, April 3, 2015

Fiercely Independent

Porter's been walking independently for a little over a month. His confidence has grown to the point that he no longer wants or needs to hold my hand on most occasions. It's the want part that is hardest for me- this new found independence is difficult to accept...I want to hold his hand and keep him safe. I want to make sure that I'm there to catch him when he falls. I want to keep him in a bubble some days. And, he's letting me know, in the best way that he can, that it's OK for him to fall. He's not afraid. In fact, he's determined. Hands hit the ground and he immediately stands back up and motors along.
He still needs to grow stronger- he's not as steady on the downhill as he needs to be. He's going to fall, and sometimes fall hard. I need to accept that. My urge to chase him on the downhill is strong, but his willingness to try and try again is stronger.
His PT continues to challenge him with creative ways to strengthen his entire body. 
She understands his motivations- some days he wants a turn to direct his sister- to be the big helper :) She helps us challenge him. And the strength that he's developed over the past few months amazes me.  
At the same time, we're working on our listening skills. Because fierce independence in a crowd is a difficult arena for all of us to navigate. Safety is my main concern. He needs to be able to distinguish the sidewalk from the road. He wants to get the mail by himself when we get home from school, but he doesn't yet understand the stop, look, listen routine at the end of the driveway before stepping out into the road to open the mailbox. He wants to walk the mall by himself but doesn't understand that weaving between people may be easier for his three foot tall frame than it is for his taller mama. He wants freedom. We're both learning how to navigate this new space. And, for the next few months, while he's quicker and more agile than his pregnant mama, I may have to resort to using a leash. I swore I wouldn't, but I didn't anticipate that he'd become so quick so fast. 
The fun is just beginning! What seemed so far away just a few weeks ago is here. I'm looking forward to the adventures that lie ahead...our first trip to the zoo without a stroller is coming...I can feel it! And it feels really good. Keep up the good work little man!

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