Milestones Your Pediatrician Won’t Ask You About As a New Parent

Even if these advancements aren’t textbook examples, they’re the ones that make your heart flutter.

When it comes to learning about the developmental milestones that our children should be reaching, most of us have read hundreds of books (and even delved into the murky depths of the Internet despite knowing better). From the moment our children were born, many of us vowed to make sure they rolled, crawled, walked, and talked on schedule.

But the textbooks don’t include the other important milestones. It’s not the developmental ones that the pediatrician asks about at well-baby visits—it’s the precious, sentimental stuff that unfolds before our wet eyes with every passing day.

The Opening Phrase

My husband and I have attempted to keep track of how many words each kid has since their 15-month checkups, and the doctor has been asking. But the most remarkable thing that surprised me was my babies’ first true sentence—the first time they put two words together. What’s the first thing my kids say? (Stay tuned.) “It’s a good day.” The fact that so many people said “happy birthday” to my husband during that specific week certainly contributed to their acquisition of this endearing, upbeat phrase by both of my kids at the same time. It’s a wonderful day!

Sibling Love’s First Public Display

Because my children are identical twins, I always assumed (or hoped for) that their bond would be one-of-a-kind. Until I awoke one morning and heard them giggling in their cribs, in their distinct twin language, I had no idea how far they’d come. Divine.

Rhythm’s first expression

Silento’s earworm “Watch Me” seems to have a hold on everyone. My heart melted the first time I saw my son swaying in his high chair to that music, but he wasn’t quite dancing. Next came my daughter. Whenever music is played, they can’t help but get up and dance. (Reggae is their preferred genre, although they aren’t picky.)

Eating out for the First Time

At first, I was looking forward to a more informal moment when the babies could eat more like normal people—say, even at a restaurant—while we were busy measuring milk to the milliliter. Over the past few months, our family’s eating habits have changed significantly, as we’ve started to order meals from the children’s menu instead of anything from the diaper bag. To my relief (and that of my wallet), they’re still tiny enough to each have one meal, but it’s still amusing to do so.

Taking Your First Step With or without the Stroller,

When I had twins, stroller rides were one of my favorite parts of the day. I also knew the day would come when kids would no longer want to spend their free time with me in that manner. We recently had dinner at a neighbor’s house because they invited us. It was the first time the four of us could walk together, solely on our own two feet. I felt like I was seeing the moment they became children instead of newborns. After that, they’ll be off to college.

The First Symptoms of Individuality

As a family, we expected that my son would be the more outgoing of the twins when they were little, but it turns out that we were mistaking colic for personality traits at the time. My children’s true personalities have started to emerge recently, and it’s been delightful to witness their tiny demonstrations. My kid, like me, is up for any adventure, with anyone, at any time—and she doesn’t give a fig about it. My kid, like my spouse, is more reserved and a homebody. What a delight it is to witness them develop into small humans who have developed a sense of self!

Giving Kisses for the First Time

My toddlers haven’t yet learned how to kiss us properly. However, I look forward to those lovely smooches a lot. However, they’ve come up with something close. Upon their return from a weekend spent with their grandparents, they had a new trick up their sleeves. My mother said, “Look at how quickly they learned to blow kisses!” It was as if they were giving a salute by waving their tiny fingers in the air like a little salute because that’s exactly what they did. What a wonderful thing!

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