When people describe other people’s inadequacies, they may say to you…”So and so has a great personality!”  which translates into “So and so is ugly as sin.”  Or…”So and so is an incredible athlete”  which means “So and so can’t think his way out of a paper bag.”  Well, we think Gavin may be the athletic type.  (Which is disappointing for now, unless we can later exploit his athletic prowess for millions of dollars.)

Pediatricians have developed a way to measure mental growth in children.  There are milestones for you (and them) to observe and chart your child’s progress.  It is based upon the average age at which babies learn to do things such as giggle, wave, make eye contact, turn when called, etc.  This milestone checklist is partly so doctors can catch abnormalities early in baby brain development.  More importantly though, milestones are used for parents to quietly rank their own child against their friends’ kids.

In the beginning, Gavin was smarter than average.  Smiling, laughing, rolling over, fetching  (or was that Duncan?).  Gavin was passing the milestones early by weeks, if not an entire month.  We would visit with the pediatrician and made sure she knew how advanced our prodigy was.  She would check off the milestone boxes on the Worm’s medical chart and we would make sure she documented the additional parlor tricks of our young Einstein.  Oh, how we enjoyed weekends at the park, jeering and throwing yogurt drops at all of the ‘normal’ kids falling off swings and tripping over themselves in the grass.  Our child was so much smarter than THAT!


Well that’s changed, and not for the better.  Gavin’s almost 10 months old and has missed a few milestones already.  He doesn’t mimic any sounds we make (except for burping and farting).  He doesn’t say mama or dada.  He uses his forehead as an extra limb.  There’s no baby sign language coming off his hands even though I’ve been teaching him how to sign “eat” for 6 months now.  (At least, I’m learning sign language…)

Let’s just say that if licking the sliding glass door, dragging your face over the carpet, and chewing power cords comprised the milestone checklist, the Worm is in the 99th percentile.  But alas, he is doomed to be either an athlete, or worse, a reality TV actor.