Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Measuring Up – 1

Jessica walking Amanda to school.
As I was working on my last post “Some Things Take Time,” I began to ponder these next two posts on measuring up. It’s such an important topic that I took my time writing this, wanting to make sure that I communicate it as clearly as possible.

Does Your Child Measure Up?

Most of us have seen charts that measure a child’s developmental stages from infant to toddler. These charts help us as parents to know when our baby should be rolling over, sitting up on his or her own, crawling and the like. We need to be informed, because we spend more time with our children than the medical professionals do and we might notice something out of the ordinary that they never saw.

It’s important that our children get the professional care that they need, but that is not what these posts are about. They are about addressing the kind that parents do with one healthy, normal kid against another. Pride, not the interest of the child, drives this kind of comparing.

Let me use a short scenario. Dad takes his son Jimmy at age 2 ½ to his very first day at playgroup. While there, Dad meets the father of another boy named Johnny who he finds out is the same age and has a birthday in the same month as Jimmy. Both dads are standing proudly by watching their boys at play. The boys run up to their dads, telling them excitedly about something they had been playing. Johnny is speaking in full sentences, but Jimmy is not yet able to. Up until that moment, Jimmy’s dad had thought his son was a bright spark, but now he begins to wonder.

What would you say to Jimmy’s dad? I’d love to hear from you, but I might not respond to comments on this post as there is more that I want to say on this topic in “Measuring Up – Part 2.”

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