Stairclimbing and garage doors
I didn’t intend for this blog thing to be a Keegan update page, but the kid keeps doing things that I find worth talking about. And I couldn’t think of anything particularly humorous and/or profound to write about. [Sorry for the prepositions ending those 2 consecutive sentences.] So Keegan turned 16 months the other day. No wild trip to Vegas to celebrate, but the occasion does seem to have coincided with some new-found tricks from the little guy.
Last night, I did the usual thing when I get home from work. I went upstairs to change clothes. I mean who wants to sit around and watch Jericho in a suit? (And is it me or has Skeet Ulrich been taking acting lessons from David Caruso’s School of Overacting?) Normally, we keep a gate at the bottom of the stairs so Keegan can’t climb up there and then fall back down. For whatever reason (ask Jen, because I don’t know), the gate wasn’t there last night. As I reached the top of the stairs, I looked back and K-Man was standing at the bottom looking up at me. He seemed a bit befuddled because the gate wasn’t there — thinking “Wait a minute. Is this a trap? There’s usually a gate here. Will I get yelled at if I start climbing the stairs?” I just watched him ponder his situation. He looked up at me again and started climbing.
Now up until very recently, climbing the stairs for Keegan involved more of a crawling up the stairs. A few nights ago, I noticed him walking up the 3 steps from the garage to the kitchen. Holding onto the wall, he stepped up on each step. But the stairs up to the second floor are 16 steps. Can he make it that far without tuckering out and falling backwards head over heels forever doomed to fear staircases? Well, the first 5 or 6 steps allow him to hold onto the balusters (it’s a word — look it up). No sweat. We’re just warming up. After that, he has to hold onto the wall with his fat little hands. Not an easy task. But he presses on. I’m just watching. Occasionally, he looks up at me to make sure I’m still there as if he might turn around if he no longer has this audience. Well, he made it the whole way up. I congratulated him. He barely acknowledged me. Once he reaches the top of the stairs it’s all about finding the phone by the bed and hitting the buttons on it.
Although he might not see it as a huge step, it’s one of those milestones of sorts that makes me pause. I think about when he first sat up in the swing. When he first jumped in the jumper. When he stopped using the jumper because he got too tall and would just dangle from it scraping the floor with his shins. When he pulled himself up on the coffee table to play with the phone and hit the buttons on it. All of those things “just happened.” These events remind me that he’ll be asking me for the car keys soon (cue Harry Chapin), and I’ll be writing checks to some college for his room deposit. And I’ll be yearning for the days when all he wanted was someone to hold him and feed him a bottle.
Oh yea, the post is called “Stairclimbing and garage doors.” I know you want to know about the garage door reference. You will recall that Keegan has this obsession with wheels. Naturally, when we used to set him down in the garage, all he wanted to do was circle the car to touch the wheels. In the last few weeks though the garage now represents the place where the garage doors go “down.” [We all know they go up too, but Keegan seems fixated on the word “down” for the moment.] So when we set him down now in the garage or we’re just playing in the back of the house with the garage doors open, Keegan points up at the doors and says “down” — like continuously. Down. Down. Down. Down. It’s cute if not monotonous.