My Son, the Giant and The Little Gym

I want to write about our experience today at The Little Gym while it is still fresh in my mind. I don’t have a photo of our time there, but here’s another shot from the same series as yesterday’s photos if for no other reason that you can never have to much Wes cuteness:

I must admit to some feelings of inadequacies as a result of our little visit. Let me preface by saying that I am not, as a norm, the type of mother who constantly compares her child to another, but certain differences stuck in my mind after this morning’s class. I’m not even sure why to be honest. There were only 5 children in the class — hardly enough to consitute a control group — and two were older babies, but the other two were teeny tiny adorable little girls of Wes’ age. Teeny tiny adorable little girls who could STAND. Wes does not stand. Try getting him to stand. He’ll just raise his string bean legs up in the air in complete rebellion of anything that even remotely resembles standing.

Maybe it’s because he’s a giant. 29″ at 6 months. When another mom asked me where that put him on the growth chart, I told her I couldn’t even give her a number. He measures about an inch taller than those in the 95th percentile, so you figure it out. He is ginormous tall, that’s how tall. And who knows, maybe those string bean legs just can’t handle supporting all the lengthiness. Or maybe we just never much bothered getting him to stand, crappy parents that we are.

And is my son the only 6 month old with either serious teething issues or one crazy case of oral fixation? While the other babies were content to play with their sticks and bells and balls, Wes just wanted to eat them (surprise!). And toys that have gone inside a drooly mouth must go in the “special” pile. All of our apparatus were very “special” indeed, to say the least.

Baby sit-ups aided by my mama  pulling on a stick?  Oh no. Flip me up over your head? No, thanks. Count my toes and fingers: we can do that. Bubbles? Bring them on! But backward flips on a cheese wedge? Hell to the no. And one of those teeny tiny adorable little girls? She didn’t just happily complete her backward flip. She then proceeded to land in the most perfect downward dog stance I’ve ever seen. Show off.

Plus remember those “special” bells? Wes wailed when they were taken back by the teacher to be put away. I have never seen him exhibit this behavior. Maybe it was because there was an audience?

We’d try Gymboree to compare — except there are no Gymborees offering baby/child classes in our county. There is one other place I can try, the local private university’s parenting place, which offers Baby Rocks and Baby Rolls classes, Yoga for Baby classes, and Music Together ones, which another parent highly recommended.

So I’m quite torn on what to do about The Little Gym. On the one hand, I don’t want to take Wes somewhere where he’ll just be miserable for an hour. On the other hand, I think it’s good for him to see other babies, to see other adults, to try new things we hadn’t thought ourselves to do at home. And then of course there is the cost. The exorbitant cost. When I break it down to $25 a class it doesn’t sound awful (it also doesn’t sound great), but when I see that amount as a whopping $360 dollars for a semester, I kinda want to vomit a little. The university’s classes come out to $20 a class. So maybe it’s time to try one of those?


7 thoughts on “My Son, the Giant and The Little Gym

  1. First of all, let me just say that Wes is taller (or as tall as) 13.5 month Jasper – um, YEAH his legs are probably harder to just MOVE let alone use 🙂

    I think if it’s not something that you find thrilling and fun, it’s a lot of money. I can’t believe there aren’t any gymboree baby classes near you.. how bout mommy & me?

    As far as the fussy behavior, well you know I have a fussy one, but if he’s teething and the others aren’t, that’s a pretty good explanation!

  2. Wes is totally not out of the norm. Neddy was 28″ at his 6 months but only 16lbs so I was told that he was too skinny but I feed him! I feed him 3 times a day with solids and average 30oz of milk a day. I can’t help it that he’s crawling and mobile and burns off all his calories!

    PS: I’m going to Orlando for a work trip in January…should I bring Neddy and try to do a playdate?

  3. It’s so difficult to tell Ariana…I might try out the other classes and see what’s what. I’m also getting information about our local MOMS club. But that would be more playdates and not necessarily working on motor skills, etc., which perhaps he needs? Or maybe everything was just too new? Or maybe it’s the teeth? So many maybes!

    Donna — Wes is 19 and a half lbs! So maybe it’s just too tiring for him to hold up all that weight, lol. We’re pretty much where you are with food. But we’re nowhere near crawling yet, I don’t think. Or standing, clearly.

    I’d love a playdate! But we’re about 3 hours from Orlando. And I don’t know if we’d be available to drive up there in January 😦

  4. I agree with Donna… Wes is not our of the norm. Also, it was his first time at The Little Gym, I bet if you decide to sign up and take him more often he’ll get used to it and enjoy it more. Also, from experience, I know that in those types of classes they work on building the strength of the babies muscles… hint hint… stronger legs = standing!! 🙂

  5. Courtney — you’re so right! The teacher and co-owner did say to me at the end that the classes have been building up (and this was already class #7, I think, in the semester). I guess the whole thing just made me feel guilty that WE hadn’t been working with him on getting all his muscles stronger. Plus little Miss Perfect Backflip? It was HER first time there, too. Who knows, maybe she and her daddy regularly practice super baby yoga at home, lol.

  6. All babies are so different. I know, people sometimes mouth that as a cliche to make “slow parents” feel better, but seriously — all babies are different. Elsa can stand, but until 2 weeks ago she didn’t know her own name. (Talk about something to make your worry your baby is slow, repeating her name over and over and she doesn’t even bother to turn her head….) And definitely no teeth! Some milestones just come faster than others.

  7. Lou! I just saw Wes in person, and he looks perfect to me. He’ll do everything when he’s ready. Finn didn’t even crawl until he was, I think, eight months old, and then was completely walking at 11 months. One month later, he’s like Mr. Lighting, running around, as you’ve seen. But do you remember how worried I was about his crawling? And what did all of that worry do except make me lose sleep and waste time looking up upsetting things on the internet?

    And don’t even GO THERE about the oral fixation. Finn tries to pick up GROSS things outside and puts EVERYTHING in his mouth — STILL — and he’s ONE! It’s definitely the teething, and from what I’ve been told by my pediatrician, it’s completely normal.

    Face it: Wes is going to be tall, dark, and handsome — with one great set of teeth.

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