When I walked into the Bean's room this morning following our morning nap, I found her standing in her crib. That's right, STANDING. I recognize that every baby does this and it's not really a major news flash, but to us, it's huge. It means that she's getting stronger and more capable. And also that we need to lower the mattress. When I walked in, I exclaimed, "my goodness, look at you!" and she looked over at me with the biggest smile. There was such pride on her face. She was beaming. And I beamed back at her because I was proud, too. Every new step she makes is a wondrous and amazing thing. Unfortunately, there was also a part of me that wanted to tell her "no!" because standing in her crib means that she could hitch that leg up over and fall out and get hurt. Images of which flash through my head in little daymares. In fact, images of horrible outcomes race through my brain on a regular basis: missing a step when I'm carrying her down the stairs, her biting through a cord, a car jumping the curb when we're out walking, as well as a thousand others. I try not to dwell on these thoughts but they do color my actions.
The great truth is that I want her to be confident and to have pride in her accomplishments. And I will do everything in my power to make that happen. But how as parents do you balance that support with guidance. I can't rationally explain to her why she should or shouldn't do things. So my question is: how do you keep them in check without breaking their fragile little spirits?