What to Do When Babies Fall Over, or Evel Knievel Never Said "Oops"

by doodaddy on July 17, 2007


Nothing to be concerned about, I swear

I don’t say “Oops” when Boobaby falls down. She’s a daredevil, so if I did, I’d be saying pretty much nothing else.

We’re pretty physical with Boo — me, especially — and always have been.

  • I learned when she was about five months old that I could support her head through a complete face-to-face barrel roll, and thereafter we rolled daily.
  • At six months, I hung her on the monkey bars and let go, standing ready to catch her.
  • At about eight months, she started somersaulting over the shin-high balance beam. I helped her tuck her head and supported her neck until she could do them herself.

It’s like that every month: she figures out some new tumble and gets all thrilled about it. Ten months was solo swinging, thirteen months was solo sliding, and last month she started belly-swinging and demanding that I accelerate her (that’s what’s in the picture). I swear, I only dropped her on her head that once. And, of course, she got up with a wicked laugh and jumped right back on.

It’s an old saw but a true one:

If you tell your baby to cry when she falls down, she will.

By now, Boo is essentially indifferent to falls, but she will occasionally look to me after a particularly solid clunk. If I seem consternated, if I rush in a panic to her side, then she’ll start to cry. But if I calmly walk over to check her out, she’s fine.

In fact, my favorite tack after Boo takes a spill is to act all impressed:

“Wow, nice one! Was that bigger than you thought it would be?”

Nine times out of ten, her reply to that is an impish grin, as if to say “You think that was impressive? You just wait until I can climb ladders!”

Nothing is going to keep Boobaby from crying after some falls, especially when she’s sleepy or hungry. And after every fall, I feel the panic and worry inside. I just don’t let her see that — if she’s going to cry, she should cry for herself, not because I lead her to it with my terrified looks.

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in mischief,playground,Tips for Doodaddies ·

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Blog Antagonist July 17, 2007 at 10:31 am

I have boys, and they are forever getting hurt. I learned that if there is no blood (and sometimes, even if there is) then taking a very nonchalant attitude is the best thing to do. I have one daredevil, and one very cautious child, but both of them are pretty tough about getting hurt…UNLESS they see Mom freaking out.

It was hard for me to learn not to freak out. I had sisters and they just weren’t as…physical as my boys are. But husband beat it into me that I was not doing them any favors every time I rushed to comfort them.

He was right.


Taste Like Crazy July 17, 2007 at 11:58 am

We haven’t met, but apparently our children have.
Nice to read about someone else’s daredevil.
We do the same with Cara as you do with Boobaby.
She’s becoming quite the accomplished walker, but still has her spills.
“Wow, you really hit hard that time, huh?” is the general reaction that she gets.

Can’t wait to read your next post.



doodaddy July 19, 2007 at 4:37 pm

Interesting about the boy/girl thing. I dunno — maybe it’s because Boo has a stay-at-home dad, but she’s the most tackle-rific, upside-down-luvin’, somersaultiest kid of her age I know…


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