Somewhere I read (probably in one of those baby books I surreptitiously went through but wasn't allowed to buy) that watching a baby grow is something like watching man go through evolution. You know, from a lying-in-one-place creature to a walking, talking, thinking, manipulating person. I remember being staggered at the thought.
Now, watching evolution in progress, I continue to be pretty staggered. The Bhaeblet started off as this perfect little thing all wrapped up in a bundle, squalling away. I wish I had listened more to my aunts and great aunts and held him a lot more. They said that he had been in a warm, safe cocoon for so long, he was bound to feel scared in the open, so I shouldn't be upset with his constant squalling. I listened however, to the alarmists who said I shouldn't hold him too much (huh??) because then he would never give me any rest. Guess what, I never got any of that fabled rest anyway, and I'd rather have held my baby.
Anyway, then he started holding his head up, and looking around, grabbing at things. He could grasp stuff pretty early, I understand, and it was so exciting to watch him trying to work his thumbs. And then, one evening, he was mad at me for something or the other, and this little baby was just so angry and howling so loud, and throwing his body around so hard, he just flipped himself over. A big flip for a baby, a giant step for Ma-kind. He was only 4 months old, too.
And then he's trying to pull himself around. I wasn't very encouraging (so sue me!) because we live on the ground floor and the place badly needed pest control and I was paranoid about him eating insects. But then we got to Madras and my parents were outraged at my failure to allow their grandson to make progress, and taught him to crawl properly in days. (He was, of course, good and ready.) In the meantime he also liked to try to stand, and can now stagger around with help. He will be 8 months old this week, so I figure he's doing ok on those milestone charts Spock has forbidden me to follow.
He also learnt to pull himself up (holding onto our hands) from a lying to a standing position when he was about 5 months old, and is now trying to pull himself up using the furniture. So he doesn't have to depend on his parents I suppose.
He is changing his looks all the time, too. And while he remains scarily skinny, he is shooting up all the time. He outgrows pants which continue to be too big for him at the waist. His shirts and rompers hang on him but are soon too short to go around his diapers. His photos show a different baby each month. This, I imagine, can well be compared to evolution.
Only, and you will just have to understand that I am extremely worked up about this, I did not give him permission to grow up. I had just got used to this wee baby-in-a-bundle when he was given his first rice. And despite all my protests, the darned baby was more than ready for his solids. He was only 5 months old, but who listens to me? And then he got mobile. I am so not ready for any of this. He'll soon be sneaking off for his first drink in a bar at this rate, and I'm not even 25 yet.
I suddenly feel awfully depressed.