Updated: Nov 8, 2019
So I have injured my wrist , and it is surprising how much you actually use your non dominant arm. Or how much you take for granted your hands and when they don't work or one is sore, childcare is so much harder. We as Mums really do need to be in peak physical performance. We are athletes who don't actually ever stop. (but thats another blog about the best and worst unpaid 24/7 job in the world ) We aren't allowed to get sick or hurt !
But with being slightly handicapped, get the pun !! I was in a splint with ripped ligaments from something to do with repetitive strain of lifting not so wee one. I had to change the way the cared for her and allowed her to do things for herself that I just could not. And one of those things was getting her ( without too much protesting from her I might add, she has totally up for it ) to climb things and get up and more importantly down from places, like cot, chairs and stairs. It occurred to how important it is to get them , almost train our kids the correct and safe way to navigate their world of dangers. It's not just me that is accident prone and our children fall over and trip up and go literally head first into life and hurt themselves. Their centre of gravity is head driven , it's the heaviest part of their bodies and their bodies follow where head goes. You will notice they when they are looking around a lot they fall over, they haven't learnt to counter balance themselves. It is all trial and error.
Next time you have a minute, hold your hands above your head in a circle. See how much room you have between the hands and your head. Loads, our arms are long. Now do this with your baby/toddler. Their hands don't even touch around their heads or barely. So now you can understand how dominant their heads are in navigation and accidents caused. So when they are learning new things , you have to step in and help them counter their nature and uncontrollable urge to go head first.
Stairs - For me it is detrimental that they stay as such on their tummies, lowest point of gravity , crawling forward up them and down crawling backwards. Even if you don't have stairs , someone will and if they don't have supervision and or gates, it's a matter of times before they go down head first. So it is a fundamental building block to have your bubs climb up crawling and literally a controlled slide down on their tummies. Babies natural curiosity will lead them to the stairs, so getting the to go up is not problem. They love to conquer them and will happily go up and down supervised for hours if let. I find it handy , ( especially with the wrist at the moment ) to allow her to go up by herself with me trailing behind. And I am pleased to say with work. Me holding on to ankles and dragging her down she has mastered the downward slip and slide on her belly with me trailing in front. If you don't have stairs and your wee one is an adventurer, hit up your local soft play. They have soft climbing stairs and obstacles a plenty to learn to manoeuvre over and around. The learning backwards skills is also great to practise here is slides. As stated , wee ones heads are heavy and going down a slide without knowledge to hold on or lean backwards and many a child has smacked their heads forward going down slides. At least soft plays have a cushioned landing until it clicks to go down backwards. When they are older they can go downs slides and stairs holding on and or holding a hand or railing.
Toilets - As well as stairs , my wee one has a fascination with water, and anything that holds it. The nappy bucket has to go up high. There are gates stopping her from playing in the cats water bowl. And new self closing toilet seats and huge signs in sharpie marker on all the cisterns and doors to our bathrooms to remind everyone who is visiting or living here to close the lid, seat and door once finished. As she is in there like a shot and hands and objects down the loo before you can flush. Now it's not just the obvious sanitary factors Im talking about. But she will if left for more than a split sec throw herself down the bowl to get to the water. And with that big head of hers , she would essentially get stuck and drown. Bit of TMI, I have three teen boys so the big signs are for them who leave seats up and doors open all the time ! And can't understand why she is so fascinated with joining them in the bathroom. I did write a blog on never peeing alone again and it's not just me she wants to be with !! You can get locks for the seats but I feel she would figure it out quickly and they , the teens would not.
Depth perception - I have found as my wee one is now motoring with the walking she has no depth perception or just insane curiosity as she will find every hole, indentation in the ground , go in to every space and fall over and off things constantly and getting that head of her stuck ! I need to wrap her in cotton wool and bubble wrap and she has bruise on bruise on her forehead and its always her head she hits ! I find that I have to just sit back and let her discovery this , painful or not and try to guide her with voice commands instead of hands on. I feel like a farmer rounding up sheep with a dog, commands and whistles to get them through the gate. But I have to sit on hands and get her to feel her own way. She is determined to climb up things , chairs and small tables. So it's the backwards like the stairs I am teaching her for getting down. She seems to find any hollow or depression in the playground and fall in and over, usually resulting in a face full of grit, dirt or sand. She has a determined inane need to see if she can fit through what ever it is , usually chasing the cat. And gets stuck. I let her work and worm her way through and or out the way she came and praise her for keeping at it or a hug if she embarrassed it didn't work out. But we as parents need to be aware that their heads are so much bigger than their bodies and we can see if what they are attempting is doable of not.
I feel like we are taking three steps forward and one step backwards, but I guess that is the what I need her to do. To put her safety first by going backwards , finding reverse in her head and moving away. Learning danger . I am actively encouraging her to learn these things for independence and but also to allow me to heal from not quite learning my lesson either. Booboo wrist .