3 Great Things (and 3 Not-So-Great Things) About Having an Early Walker
There are a few milestones in a baby's first couple of years that parents wait for, look forward to, and make sure to document: Their first smile, the first time they say “mama” or “dada,” their first nibble of solid food, and their first steps. For the average baby, these first wobbly steps will come sometime around their first birthday. For some babies though, the very early walkers, these first steps might come closer to the time they’re eight or nine months old.
If you’re the parent of a very early walker you’ve probably already noticed many of the joys, and challenges, associated with having a baby that’s on the go far before their peers. Check out the list below for three great things, and three not-so-great things about having an early walker!
Everyone will be impressed.
When your tiny baby hops out of your arms and starts to explore the room upright, there’s a good chance that all the other grown-ups’ around will be pretty impressed. Your babe will be the center of attention and seeing the looks of surprise on other people’s faces might feel pretty good. On the other hand …
Your mom friends might think that their baby is behind.
Spending time with other moms who have babies the same age might feel a little bit uncomfortable, especially if they’re worried about their own babies' development. While all moms know on a logical level that babies are all different and meet milestones on their own schedule, it can still burn a little bit when your baby is not doing something that you wish they were. As the parent of an early walker, you can absolutely celebrate your baby’s milestone but be sure to be thoughtful about how you communicate your joy with other moms.
Your tired arms will get a rest.
There’s no doubt that carrying a little one around for months and months is a real strength builder. When your baby begins to walk independently your tired arms might finally get the rest they’ve been waiting for. While it might feel good to have your arms and hands free for once …
You’ll have to babyproof on the fly.
Most parents begin to baby proof in earnest once their little one starts to crawl and move around semi-independently. When your baby is an early walker though, you’ll have to hit the ground running when it comes to babyproofing. Since you know your baby is curious and mobile, be sure to read ahead when it comes to all the ways you’ll need to keep your little one safe.
Your baby might be ahead of the curve on other things, too.
Studies show that babies who are early standers and walkers are often quick to learn other skills as well so if you’ve got an early walker you might be excited about what their early walking might mean for their test scores. On the other hand …
You might be disappointed when they meet other milestones on a more typical timeline.
Just because a baby walks sooner than their peers doesn't mean that other milestones are destined to come early as well. As you continue to watch your baby grow you might be surprised and a little bit disappointed when they hit other milestones on a more developmentally typical track.