8 Alternative Baby Milestones


Do you know what I am tired of? Actually, that’s an unfair question, because I’m tired of quite a lot right now. I’m tired of sitting around on my backside waiting for my ankle to heal. I am tired of calling the builder who has promised to come and fix the mirror that’s half hanging off the wall. I am bored of nursery politics. And I’m massively over my son poking me really hard in the nose.

I could go on, but you get the picture. I’m tired. And when I get tired my dreams get darker. See Saturday’s horrifically vivid armed kidnap (FYI, I was the victim rather than the perp), Sunday’s terror situation and last night’s locked house slowly filling with water. What’s that? Oh yeah, you’re right. I did miss out Monday. What on earth did I dream about on Monday?

I honestly can’t remember. But since I’m really struggling to link this rambling intro into this week’s midweek list, I’m going to go ahead and say it involved a spirit guide visiting me in the early hours and unveiling a plan that would lead me to much glory and great riches. “Make new baby milestone cards,” the spirit advised. “But make them much funnier and more realistic than the ‘I am four months old’ and ‘I sat up for the first time’ ones you see parents posting on social media.”

Your wish is my command, spirit guide. Here are eight alternative baby milestones parents don’t celebrate, but possibly should.

1. Today, I did my first nappy blowout

Right from the off, it’s been clear that my son’s bowels possess the type of power that would petrify a Pampers executive. I say this not just because his backdrafts and side escapes have forced my wife and I to discard numerous outfits in numerous places on numerous continents, but also because it took less than 48 hours for him to achieve his first nappy blowout.

And what a family picture it would have been. In the background, my wife would have been half conscious and attached to a drip. To the right, I would have been rocking back and forth in my chair muttering “poop, just so much poop”. And in the centre, my son would have been bright red and screaming and the health care assistant would have been cleaning him up, dealing with his dirty clothes, fitting a new nappy and wondering what on earth she’d done to deserve this fresh, smelly hell.

2. Today, I took my first trip to the doctors

“He’s got a rash. Honey, he’s got a rash. It must be measles. Or meningitis. He’s burning up. Must call the doctor. Why won’t they pick up? He’s getting hotter. This can’t wait. He’s not himself. Let’s just go. It’s okay, baby. We love you, we love you, we love you. Oh my God, we’re terrible parents. How did we not notice he had meningitis? I think he’s fitting. What if he’s fitting? How can I tell if he’s fitting? Kissy, kissy, kissy. Everything’s going to be fine, bubby. You’re so brave. Let us through, dying child. Meningitis. Must see doctor now. NOW! Yes, you can examine him. No, he’s not had a banana before this morning. Yes, it’s probably an allergic reaction. Of course, we’ll show ourselves out.”

3. Today, I had my first taste of sugar

Our son couldn’t talk the first time a family member shoved some cake down his gullet. But judging by his eyes, he was thinking: ‘OMG! What is this crack and where have you been hiding it all my life? I need more RIGHT NOW. No, actually. Stairs. Wait. Radiator. A locked door. Raaaahhhhh. Run in circles. Run in circles. An empty plastic bottle. Toys. Freedom. Stairs.’
This went on for approximately 15 minutes. Then he ran out of fuel, groaned a little and lay down for a little sleep.

4. Today, I projectile vomited for the first time

Oh how proud we were when our son achieved this notable rite of passage. And when I say proud, I mean stressed, covered in milk and half-digested biscuits and shouting stuff like, “Why won’t he stop?” and, “Oh my God, it’s all over the car seat.”

5. Today, I had my first meltdown in a public place

If this award were being given to mummy, it would focus on the evening she lost her rag at the midwife and attempted to break out of hospital. And if it were being given to daddy, it would mention the trip to John Lewis that ended with him crying on an assistant’s shoulder (still too embarrassed to go back to Westfield Stratford). But since it’s being given to bubby, it has to go to his: “this pool is cold and I am not going to breathe or stop flapping my arms and legs until you take me out and wrap me up in a towel” first swimming lesson hissy fit.

6. Today, I was sick on a family friend

I remember this like it was yesterday. The day was Sunday, the sun was shining, the clock had just struck 2.30pm and one of my wife’s uncles was boasting about how he was the ‘winding king’. “Instead of putting them over my shoulder, I sit them up and then gently tap the back,” he explained, before endeavouring to use our son to demonstrate his prowess. The wee man looked uncomfortable from the start, but the uncle would not be denied. “Tap, tap, tap…” Boom! Our son regurgitated his latest meal all over his cream trousers. LOL.

7. Today, I bit a giant chunk out of daddy’s finger

What a brave and surprisingly bloodthirsty little soldier we’re developing. Today, just like yesterday and the day before, our son waited until I was putting teething gel right at the back of his gums and then used his front teeth to clamp down on my defenceless digit. That hurt, but it didn’t annoy me. What annoyed me was the bit when he started shaking his head and trying to drag me across the kitchen. Well that, and the fact both he and my wife laughed about it afterwards.

8. Today, I smashed up one of mummy and daddy’s friend’s houses

If you think peeing all over a wooden floor and seat cushion counts as smashing up a house, then our bubster achieved this milestone pretty early on in life (sorry Raj and Bhavika). And if you reckon smashing up involves chucking soil all over a white kitchen floor, overturning bins and breaking a ceramic tissue box holder, then he clocked it up two weeks ago (sorry Martin and Hilary). Either way, he’s got it.


  1. You’re so funny! I wrote a blog post called under-celebrated milestones when my 5-year-old daughter finally learned to wipe her own butt. People don’t normally put that down in the baby books, but they should.

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