Toddlerhood (12-36 months)
884 weeks until graduation . . .
What’s this phase all about?
In the beginning, your baby is still very much a baby. Be ready, though. That won’t last much longer. Soon his nonsense babble will give way to actual words. If she hasn’t already, she’ll take that first step soon and babyproofing will take on a whole new meaning. During this phase, many toddlers find a new favorite word, “No!” She’ll be quick to let you know she can, “Do it myself!” Budding independence may lead to frequent tantrums and meltdowns. Your patience will be tested multiple times over as you wait for her to dress or feed herself (and clean up the ensuing mess). You’ll find that these are the years when his physical ability to get into dangerous situations far outweighs his mental ability to recognize danger. You can’t take your eyes off of him during this phase. And, somewhere in all of this, most parents begin potty-training!
Infancy (0-12 months)
936 weeks until graduation . . .
What’s this phase all about?
Sleeping, eating, sleeping, pooping, sleeping, crying . . . you get it. The main goal of parents in this phase it to get baby to sleep through the night. Honestly, sometimes the physical demands are so great and the amount of sleep so small during this phase that brains become mush and not falling asleep while changing a diaper becomes the main goal. This may be the phase when you most need sleep, but this is also the phase when your child needs you more than they ever will again. They are totally helpless without you.
It's Just a Phase, Don't Miss It!How many times have you thought, “It’s just a phase!” or, maybe, “Please, let this just be a phase!”? Maybe your infant thinks 3:00am is great mommy-me time. Or, your preschooler asks “Why?” so many times your brain hurts. Maybe, your nine-year-old son tells so many groan-worthy jokes you could publish your own joke book. Or, your middle-school daughter rolls her eyes so often you wonder if it really is possible for them to get stuck!
We tend to talk about phases negatively, as if they’re something we hope to get through as quickly as possible. However, in their book, It’s Just a Phase So Don’t Miss It, Reggie Joiner and Kristen Ivy define a phase this way:
Phase: A timeframe in a kid’s life when you can leverage
distinctive opportunities to influence their future.
Each phase has its own significant relationships, present realities, and distinctive opportunities. Let me encourage you to begin to think about phases positively. Picture how you can leverage each of the above phases to influence your child.
They typical child has around 936 weeks between birth and high school graduation. That’s a lot of phases! My oldest child started college this year. Let me assure you the days (or phases) may seem long, but the years really do go by way too fast. I am going to begin a series of posts covering different phases in your child’s life (birth-18) and how you can leverage those phases to influence your child and their walk with Christ. Stay tuned!