Since Olivia has started walking, we have noticed so many wonderful changes in Olivia. She loves to walk, walk and walk some more. She has been so happy and full of laughter. She is gaining more and more independence and confidence. She also has developed an adorable "ice-breaker". She puts her hands on either side of her chin to sign "cute", smiles and then starts laughing. Everyone around her, of course, breaks into laughter with her. She gets such a kick out of getting others to laugh and smile. Quintessential Olivia !
Yesterday, we were at a large gathering of Linda's family to celebrate Christmas. Normally, in large group settings Olivia reverts to being a "cling-on" never venturing beyond Mom's protective wing. Yesterday, Olivia would walk away from Mom (yes walk, prior to the last few days Olivia didn't seem to realize she could walk other places than home and therapy), explore a bit, then return to Mom to touch base, and then repeat. She seemed to be having such a good time and was interacting with just about everyone.
Today at physical therapy, she was doing it again. Going across all the way across the room with her therapist, and then coming back to home base. Then Olivia asked to ride on the platform swing - three times. Olivia has always been intrigued by the swing, but refused to be put on it. Today, she looked like she rides on it all the time. The therapist was amazed at how well she was doing with everything.
We knew all of this would come with time, when she was developmentally ready. But, it was hard when people kept accusing us of being overprotective. We knew she just wasn't ready to spread her wings, and until then we were going to help her feel safe and secure. It was such a joy to watch her fly solo. What a way to start the new year.