It's a pretty common joke among parents to admonish parents of still-immobile babies to "Enjoy it! Soon they'll be moving and then life as you know it is over!" Ah ha ha ha. We'll act as if learning to crawl and walk are these to-be-dreaded milestones. It is true that being able to place your baby down in one spot and have them still be there when you return 10 seconds later is a very, very, very nice thing. But I was thinking about all this the other day and realized that I really like having a walking child. I know they say that crawling is really good for babies and can prevent dyslexia and everything, but all that aside I almost envy people whose babies skip crawling and go straight to walking.
There's so many things that have gotten so much easier since D became a fairly steady walker. We can go to the playground! And he can actually play! Or even just hang out in the patio here at home. I seriously looked forward to this for so long. I also love that now we can walk out the door together. D can step down the two steps in front of our door, and walk out to the car beside me rather than me having to carry him. Of course, this requires heave precautions and a close eye to make sure he doesn't go off into the street, but it's really nice to have my hands free. It's little things like being able to carry groceries in myself, or hold those extra few things we need to take out to the car (like the stroller).
When your baby is immobile, you can go to the park and sit on a blanket and everything's pretty cool (as long as baby is happy, of course). They they start crawling and want to go everywhere, but "going everywhere" means putting their hands all over the ground, hands that will soon end up in their mouths, and that can be kind of a nightmare. Then they start walking and their hands are FREE and they can move more easily, explore more easily, and you don't have to cringe at how their poor knees must be feeling or how dirty their hands are getting, etc.
There are, of course, parts about walking that suck. He can be pretty quick. Mostly, when he's on his feet he can reach a LOT more things that he could when on his belly or knees. But overall, it gives us both a lot of freedom for him to be able to walk on his own. Like being able to carry his own uber-stylish European man carry-all.