In some ways I was a little surprised by our former MDs shock that our toddler had "missed" some developmental milestones. Here were some of the "big" concerns:
I know that milestones can be important in determining problems, but I also think that they can be used to create undue stress (as would have been the case if we'd actually believed there was a problem when we talked to our doctor).
- She wasn't talking much... but the reason was incredibly clear (if somewhat annoying). Sadie has been very good at communicating non-verbally for quite some time. She'd make little gestures and sounds and since we always knew what she meant, she didn't really feel the need to talk. We knew that that would change once Maggie came around and so we didn't really worry about it much. We figured she would start talking before too long and that the process would probably rapidly accelerate once there was a baby in the house.
- She didn't "go up and down stairs by herself." This one had be kind of shocked. I have seen two year olds who could go up and down stairs by themselves and it made me feel pretty uneasy. And the stairs in our apartment are pretty steep. I knew, at twenty four months, that Sadie wasn't ready to be going up and down stairs on her own. Two months later she is ready and she's very proud of herself. But the idea of a doctor acting like this milestone should be pushed before a child is ready makes me very uneasy... It seems like a recipe for disaster.
- She wasn't getting dressed on her own (do many 24-month olds do this, because our former doctor acted like it was pretty typical?). In fact, she wasn't even interested in getting dressed on her own. She probably would have been okay wearing her diaper all day (it was the end of June and it just would be easier to jump in the baby pool at Nani's house that way. Now, on her own, without being pushed, she's become obsessed with doing things on her own. She'll literally spend half an hour practicing putting on her socks and shoes by herself.
And I'm very happy that we decided to make a change and go with the local clinic down the street from our home. It's a much less stressful experience!