Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The risks of silly walks

My son has a weird way of walking sometimes where he leans forward, puts his arms out, and kind of bobs as he goes. This has bothered his teachers since he first started in school. This has bothered me ... well, never, actually. Because I'm a weak, enabling mom, no doubt. I've just never been of the opinion that standing up straight needs to be one of his major goals, and the fact that he gets a good, comforting proprioceptive kick from that bobbing makes it something to not take so lightly.

Lately, the rationale used to stamp this out is that it makes him look weird to his peers. This, too, is fine by me -- standing up straight is not going to suddenly make him a typical 14-year-old, and his peers might as well see him coming. My suspicion is that it's just something that bugs grown-ups, and that they think is an easy and obvious thing to fix. Yet they've been working on this since he was five, and fixed? Not so much.

There is one downside to walking his walk, though, that we discovered on a stroll around the neighborhood last week: If you're leaning forward and your collar is open, a bug can fly in and bite you on the chest.

It freaked me out, I'll admit, seeing those two little marks on my boy's chest. They swelled up pretty fast, and I was all over the Internet trying to find out what dire possibilities we were facing. The description kept bringing up spider bites, but unless we have flying spiders or he walked through a spider web, that seemed unlikely. He said he heard a little buzz, but there was no stinger left behind.

The bite was painful enough to make my feeling-no-pain kid say "Ow!" and the initial swelling was followed up by hives at a nearby spot, which had me hyperventilating. And then ... nothing. He was fine. I was a wreck, but he was A-OK.

I don't think this is going to make me change my position on his walking position. He can still bob and weave for all I care. But you know what? I'm going to button up his darn shirt when he does it.


Katharine said...

Hurray for moms with common sense about their children's differences. Not everything must be "fixed." You go, girl!

Homemom3 said...

100% behind ya. My son always tripped over his feet around 3 years old he was still doing it but getting better. Docs noticed, made him walk down a hall- no tripping, so then they made him run- course he fell. They wanted to correct the problem, I objected - he walks, runs, skips, etc. He's 10 now.

kailani said...

Ouch! I hope he's okay now! We all know how resilient kids are. I'm sure he was out walking his walk the very next day! LOL!

Thank you for sharing this with the Carnival of Family Life!

Terri said...

Thanks for the support, everyone! It's good to know I'm not the only one who doesn't think his walk is a big deal.

Kailani, he is still walking his walk, but for a long time he wouldn't walk past the corner where he was stung. He's resilient, but careful. :)

eagerblogger said...

I always believe everyone is unique. My daughter is not good in climbing, so what? It's not as if being a good climber is a prerequisite to being successful in life. It's not what's outside but what's inside that really matters.