I can already hear the smartasses out there saying, “Well, look at his parents.” Hyuck hyuck hyuck, y’all. Gee whiz, you’re so clever! *rolls eyes*
Surely I’m not the only parent who wonders if their kid is developing normally, even though I know all kids develop at their own pace and I know that “normal” is a pretty arbitrary word anyway.
But still, I worry.
It didn’t help that yesterday, when I went to pick Bucko up from school, his teacher’s supervisor asked to have a conference with her, his teacher, and me to discuss “things we could all be doing to help Bucko be more successful.” Um, okay. What provoked this was a particularly tearful day––I guess he cried most of the time he was there (3.5 hours or so). He wasn’t happy sitting in his high chair, so his teacher took him out and was feeding him baby food while he was sitting on her lap, which is apparently a Big No-No according to DoD* child care guidelines. He also is starting to get mad when other kids try to play near him. And, as usual, he wants to be held a LOT, which is not gonna happen because his classroom has a lot of little babies who need the one-on-one time more than he does.
*Department of Defense, for you civilians out there
So the conference was today, when I went to pick him up from school (today was a much better day, BTW). Essentially I was told that I need to make sure I’m feeding him in a high chair, facing him, because that is the only approved way of feeding a baby solid food in DoD-land. Which is how I generally feed him anyway. And I told the supervisor that, but I don’t think she believed me. And I’m supposed to “expose him to social situations.” I take him to swim lessons and music class and new mom groups and library storytime and daycare. How much more socialization could I do?
Honestly, she kinda acted like I was stupid. And she’d do this thing where she’d make eye contact with me except she’d raise her eyebrows and look up and to the left and flutter her eyelids every time she elongated a vowel sound, which was often, because she also talked r e a l l y s l o w l y:
“W e j u s t n e e d t o M A A A A A A K E S U U U U U U R E [flutter flutter flutter]
w e a r e g i v i n g h i m a l l t h e T O O O O O O O L S [flutter flutter]
h e n e e d s t o S U C C E E E E E E E D [flutter]”
His teacher didn’t say that much. I got the impression that she thought the ‘conference’ was bullshit. Of course she wouldn’t actually SAY that. But I got the distinct feeling that she isn’t all that enamored of her supervisor. Plus, she is not a native English speaker––Spanish is her primary language––so although she can communicate pretty well in English, you can tell she isn’t as articulate as she’d like to be when she’s not speaking her native language, and that it frustrates her. (Totally understandable.) But probably more importantly, her supervisor appears to frustrate her. (Again, totally understandable.)
Maybe it’s just first-time mom anxieties, but this added to my list of Things Bucko Does That Make Me Wonder If He’s Okay. (Or more accurately, Things That May Or May Not Be Things To Worry About.)
- He doesn’t put things in his mouth (toys, Cheerios, teethers, etc.).
- He likes to cross his first two fingers.
- When he gets frustrated, he twists his hands back and forth like he’s unscrewing light bulbs.
- He’s not that into food (except yogurt, which he would probably eat by the bucketful if we let him).
- He’s not crawling or pulling up to stand.
- He’s never been interested in rolling over.
- He doesn’t like to have other kids around him.
- He demands a LOT of one-on-one interaction.
He won’t sleep by himself.(I think we’ve got that one addressed, thank God.)
There’s probably more but I have trouble remembering all of my neuroses at whim.
I’d really like to not screw this kid up.