Bernard Developments

I have been failing to document Bernard’s development. On the one hand, this doesn’t matter too much, as I have both (a) an in-depth photographic log and (b) Karen’s publications. But on the other hand, there are some things that get missed out, so I’m going to try to resolve that now. If you think that reading about my son will be dull, then you should probably stop now, though I’ve done my best to make it as interesting a read as possible.

This morning I looked after Bernard for a couple of hours, allowing Karen to have a bit of a lie in. Firstly I cooked him a slice of toast. To make it more grabbable, we coarsely cut off the four crusts, and these soldiers hold their shape nicely. I claimed the central square as my own.

After toast, we relocated to the sitting room floor, where Bernard bum-shuffled over the coffee table and started pulling things off of it. I found this immensely exciting. I appreciate that as he gets more mobile, he will become more and more of what is referred to as “a handful”, but (a) it’s inevitable, (b) I like a challenge, and (c) I’m a fool, so I’m encouraging him.

He tried to pull himself up using the edge of the coffee table, so I gave him a helping hand. Once he was upright, I leaned him against it and let go, keeping my hands in a catching position in preparation for his impending slow slide sideways. If truth be told, he was actually able to stay there for a reasonable length of time, so I didn’t feel that the exercise was without merit.

After a little while he began to make tired noises, so I sat him on my lap and did my special jiggle. This is a trick that I learned by trial and error, and it works pretty well for me. He slept on my chest for 45 minutes, after which I woke Karen so that we could prepare for our coffee engagement with Alice, Reg and Stan.

Bernard is nearly able to pull himself up to a seated position now. He deftly rolls from his back to his front, and performs the reverse manoeuvre pretty well too. On his front, he pushes himself up to his hands and knees, but is unable to translate this to worthwhile motion. While seated, he is adept at using one hand to stabilise himself and extend his reach with the other. He is also able to use toys as tools to expand his domain of terror, demolishing towers before I have finished building them.

His vocabulary seems to consist mostly of “bababababa”, “mamamamama”, “dadadadadada”, “blablablablablah”, “boooof” and “boooob”. On Thursday morning, while Karen was at the office, he was saying “mama… boob… mama… boob…” but it’s hard to know if this was a random selection of syllables, or a deliberate attempt at communicating his desires. He also makes a little “Unh” sound, which sounds a little like a grunt of exertion, but he makes it all the time. And sometimes he just yells formlessly.

That’s all for now.

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