On Monday night I watched my now seven month old daughter lie on the bed flailing her arms.
She's waving at me; she has for a few months juddered an arm in response to a wave. I smile and wave back, I gather up the changing gear.
But as I pause to watch it becomes clear that this is not a wave. It is not a juddery arm swipe. It's two arms trying to come together, trying to connect, missing, trying again, and again, suddenly two tiny hands crash into each other. Then again. And again. And again. And I know that this is not a random thing.
My daughter and I are ecstatic. Both amazed at this sudden display of co-ordination. I clap back, my smile telling her all she needs to know of my joy at this achievement and I repeat over and over and over in the way that parents do: "Clap!"
And she claps, and I clap and we both clap in celebration of her clapping.
This is another big step. This is amazing. This is her growing, right there in front of me. This is fucking amazing. I have experienced this moment of change, watched her clamber over another developmental milestone.
I change my daughter's nappy and bring her downstairs. I can't wait to tell my wife.
"Baby's just done something really cool! She's…"
"Oh, is she clapping? I meant to tell you she'd done that earlier."