My baby is constantly surprising me these days.
It used to be that time could not possibly go by more slowly. I wished my baby could do something--anything--other than lie there and stare at me. I anxiously awaited the day she would first smile, the day she would first laugh, the day she would first hold her own head up, the day she would first roll over.
At some point, I came to peace with the things she couldn't do and started appreciating her babyhood.
It's a good thing, except that whenever she does something new, I'm met with a variety of mixed emotions. First it's What? No, she didn't do that. She can't do that yet.
Denial transitions to pride: Wow! I can't believe you did that! Great job!
Righteous pride dissolves into self-righteousness: I don't think most babies can do this at her age. She must be a genius! I must be an amazing parent!
Comparing turns into tears: No! She shouldn't be doing this yet! MY BABY'S GROWING UP!!!
This happened a few weeks ago when she figured out how to get into a sitting position all on her own. It was a magical and confusing moment. I looked up from my book and saw her sitting up and said to my husband, "Wait--did you sit her up like that?"
"Nope," he said. "She must have learned how to do it on her own."
And unlike rolling over, which was a very slowly-progressing skill, she demonstrated her new abilities several more times for us that night.
A couple weeks ago, she learned to crawl, and it was the whole process all over again.
And then just a couple days ago, she started pulling herself up to standing. I'd notice some progress in that direction, but I hadn't expected her to actually accomplish it so soon. It's crazy how she learns things so quickly these days.
I love it.
But I hate it.