Clearly, this isn't going to end well...

As I reflected upon in an earlier post, babies don’t just lay there where you want them to for all of eternity. As nerves myelinate and muscles develop, kids want to move. As much as it pains any parents, children will suffer trauma of some type as they learn to crawl, stand and walk. Falling is a natural part of this process. I thought I was worrying enough before Mason began his quest for mobility. Wrong!

Mason has moved beyond just regular crawling…he’s downright danger-seeking. He loves to pull himself to his feet from just about any surface he can reach for, and has even begun shuffling along long surfaces, such as couches and hearths. All of this has developed, literally, in the last three days. For Daddy, that’s too much, too soon. Of course, I have had the camera attached to me face these past few days, getting any shots I can of Mason’s crawling, standing and, in the example above, even catching a fall or two. I should note that as terrible as the above shot looks, he actually managed to hang onto the big green Lego bucket and plopped himself to the floor bottom first (phew!).

It's situations like these that make me lose sleep at night.

It’s been very difficult handling these new ventures as a father. It can’t be said enough times that it’s inevitable that Mason will encounter falls as he explores his world and learns to ambulate. To date, he’s fallen off the hearth (which he is sitting precariously upon in the above photo) a couple of times onto his noggin…not hard, but enough to get him screaming like a banshee. As someone with a background in brain injury certification, any hit to the head makes me cringe, even though I know full well that it would take much, much more than that to do any major damage upstairs (like, say, a stroke from seeing your son teeter on a hearth?). Drool has also become his enemy…every now and then, he’ll be confidently crawling along the hardwood floor when he’ll meet a drool drip with his hand, and flop! Face down he goes. Ouch. Only a cut gum and slight fat lip so far…

It helps to remember that what Mason is going through is happening to millions of babies around the world…if we were all permanently  and adversely affected by falling at early ages, none of us would be fit to drive automobiles, perform medical procedures, or become legislators (still questioning that last one). In time, he’ll be walking (probably before I know it) and the falls will get more dramatic and traumatic on his little body. Then comes tricycles, bicycles, scooters…cars?!…

Oh boy…now I’m definitely not sleeping tonight.

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