Is he normal?

Jacob had his 2 year development check today.  Basically a check up to see whether your child is developing the way the NHS think they should be. They use the word normal and normally, I’m not sure I can get on board with that word. What actually is normal? I’d much prefer it if they just wanted to see what Jacob could do and if there was an area that wasn’t on par with everything else maybe offer some assistance. But no such look. Today we had an appointment to see whether our son was ‘normal’.

The nursery nurse who completed the check was lovely. She interacted with Jacob and Matilda (as she was very keen to show off what she could do too).

I had to complete two very detailed questionnaires  about his skills: what could he do? What does he have trouble with?  Worryingly we focused on what he needs to work on and didn’t celebrate what he could do. 

We didn’t celebrate that he can follow instructions clearly, thread small toys on a string, open doors on his own, walk up and down stairs unaided, hold a crayon and colour, identify almost anything you ask him to, or identify ALL the animals using noises (and pirates!).  

Instead she focused on the words he couldn’t say (quite a few) and how to develop that further. He’ll be off to a group before they decide if he needs further help. We’re not worried, the kid doesn’t miss a trick, he’s fab and coming along so well. 

According to the questionnaires there is the right kind of clingy, and the right kind of shy along with the right kind of play. 

What happened to treating each child as an individual? They are their own person after all. We seem to be pigeon holing children from as young as 2 (and before at times) into normal and not normal. Then we wonder why society is so judgemental with difference. We created that. We create uneasiness around different. Celebrate it! Diversity makes life interesting, exciting and unpredictable. 

There’s plenty of time to judge Jacob. When he’s two isn’t that time. 

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