When my Orel was a baby, he developed rapidly. At the age of 4 months, he was already trying to get up by himself from lying down to sitting. When he was 6 months old, he was already sitting alone, holding a bottle and drinking from it. At the age of 11 months, he was already walking. Everything was smooth. And I, perhaps because of that, took everything for granted. Yes, I was excited when he started doing something new, but this excitement passed quite fast, and I didn’t put too much importance on it. I didn’t realize how grateful I need to be. Because, you know, “all the children walk in the end”…
And then I gave birth to our Gabriel. Our Gabriel, as you know, was born with a genetic syndrome, and a complex heart defect. Until he underwent the open heart surgery at the age of 4 months he almost did not develop physically, because his heart was unable to satisfy the needs of his body. And because of the hypotonia (low muscle tone) due to the genetic issue. In fact, at the age of 4 months, he held his head at the level of a one-month-old baby. After the operation, he finally began to develop, but slowly. Very very slowly. With a lot of effort. A lot of work. A lot of physiotherapy treatments, and our work with him at home. Sometimes it looked like he will never progress. Sometimes we saw progress, and then regression. All this is very frustrating.
But you know what? Gabriel’s slow development taught me two very important things.
First, it taught me to be patient, consistent and determined. Never give up. Just keep on trying, again and again until you reach the desired result. “It doesn’t matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop” (- Confucius).
Second, it taught me to be happy with every little progress. Every little thing makes me super excited now. Nothing is taken for granted.
Gabriel turned over (at the age of six months) – I was like “wow!”. He started sitting without support (at the age of 10 months) – I jumped with joy. He began crawling (at the age of 18 months) -I screamed with enthusiasm and couldn’t calm down for hours. And when he started finally walking, at the age of two years and a half – It was an endless sensation of joy and excitement. As if we won the lottery. I just stared at him walking. Couldn’t take my eyes off of him for days. Couldn’t believe this miracle, enjoying every moment of it.
I often regret I missed this great excitement with Orel. I wish I would put more importance on it, because it is important, and no, not “all the children walk in the end”. I wish I would let myself wonder, marvel, be astonished and admire this rapid development of his. Instead, I was concentrated on the sleepless nights he provided me, complaining more than I should have. It’s a pity I understand it just now. But I’ve learned my lesson. Now, with little princess Marina, this is exactly what I’m doing! I admire every milestone she hits, even if it’s just “by the book”. I appreciate endlessly every progress she makes. I let myself be excited and feel so happy. For every little thing.
Learn to enjoy the little things. This is so important. Don’t let anything be taken for granted.