I get many messages every week with parents talking about the Wonder Weeks. Am I the only one who thinks they are all a load of rubbish?
I know many will disagree with me on this subject .. and that’s ok. I have been working with babies and parents for over 25 years …. I am just speaking from my experience.
My take on the Wonder Weeks & all of those Developmental Leap apps (although the WW focuses on the ‘mental’ development / leaps – mental development and physical development go hand in hand) :
All babies develop at such different rates. This week alone I have seen three 6 month olds. One isn’t rolling (and doesn’t move from where mum leaves him to play), one is competently rolling and mastered his rollover well over one month ago (and subsequently rolls from one end of the house to the other) and lets not forget the third, he has progressed from rolling to the bum shuffle across the floor. When babies physically develop, mentally they are processes everything too (this is obviously where the mental development comes into play).
How can all these baby’s be developing or “leaping” at the same week? It’s impossible!
Don’t get me wrong … the Wonder Weeks app is a good GENERALISED overview of NORMAL infant behaviour and mental development BUT just because your baby isn’t doing what it should in the ‘leap phase’… that is ok! I repeat .. THAT IS OK!
Your baby will talk, roll, crawl, walk and in turn go through the mental and physical developments or leaps when THEIR little bodies are ready! That time maybe earlier or later than expected! Again, that is OK.
Your baby is developing at such a rapid rate in their first 12 months. They are learning new things every.single.day.
As your baby learns and develops it is expected there will be disruptions to their sleep and mood. That’s a no brainer.
Remember when you started a new job? Remember how overwhelming the first few days or even weeks were? Your baby is no different. Their little nervous system is firing off trying to process everything they are learning/mastering. You find it hard to switch off at the end of the day. You are mentally and physically exhausted.
Learning to roll, sit, crawl, starting solids and walking are some of the major developmental stages your baby will master just in their first 12 months. And when they do – trust me when I say you won’t miss it and definitely don’t need an app to tell you it’s happening – it just simply means that they may need a little extra support to help them wind/dial down their little overstimulated bodies and mind.
An extra long cuddle before bedtime often works the best. Maybe even some quiet time (play and/or book reading) before starting the bedtime routine can also go a long way to help with dialing down your baby and assist with the disruptive sleep associated through these developmental stages.
Sometimes we can just over think and analyze what is normal infant development!
So that’s my take …. feel free to share your experience/ thoughts .. agree or disagree … life would be boring if we all thought the same!