It’s exciting to look back and see how far Avery has come in her physical independence. A couple of weeks ago I posted her latest motor skills video, and it is great to “test” her like that – I think it’s the clearest way to see the changes and improvements she has made in her movements.
However, sometimes it’s even more exciting to notice how those improvements make a difference in her every day life. Here are some really cool little things that are evidence of the huge leaps Avery has made in the last few months:
Inflatable Obstacle Course at Pioneer Day:
It used to be really hard work to let Avery play on these inflatable slides. The only part she could do by herself was the slide at the end – we had to climb in with her and help her navigate the obstacles and climb the wall. Not anymore!! She just needed a little verbal encouragement to get up the ladder wall, but she did this entire thing completely by herself about 8 or 9 times. It was awesome, and she loved it!
Once upon a time, birthday parties were also exhausting events for me. I wanted her to be completely involved in all the activities, but it meant a lot of lifting and hauling and assisting. Not anymore!! I held her hand to help her get outside, and she leaned on my hand as she navigated the steps, but once we were on the grass and said, “Sorry Mom, I have to go with the other kids now.” And she let go of my hand and took off across the grass to the activity! Bumps, hyper running kids, roots, dips – none of it stopped her!
A little later, Avery spotted Brogan in a wagon, and decided she wanted a piece of that, so she stood up and took off! Distractions – in this case, the loss of her crown – can still make her lose her focus and balance, but she’s generally very good at catching herself without getting hurt.
She stands right back up, and after Oliver comes to the rescue with her crown (so cute!!), she carries on towards her goal.
She reaches the wagon, and climbs in all by herself! Her confidence is such that she even thinks she will be able to pull the boys in the wagon!!
Later on, and it’s present opening time. The room is crowded and Avery’s low chair is pulled right up to the table. However, she decides she wants to take her gift to the birthday girl all by herself. So, she pushes her chair back, grabs the gift, and navigates the narrow crowded space to the head of the table, all by herself!
How cool is this?? Avery was pretty much able to fully participate in this water fight with hardly any assistance! Walking around the driveway with a fully loaded squirt gun, staying upright while pumping it, remaining balanced and upright even while being squirted, refusing Daddy’s help as she heads back to the water bucket to reload… the list goes on!!
These might seem like small things, but in reality they are huge! Avery is fighting, and persevering, and claiming her independence. These are exciting days!