Springfield (October 14) – Justin Davis took his first steps just over eight months into his life leading many family members to believe a walking prodigy was among them. As he let go of the family room coffee table, the baby, still months from his first birthday, took two wobbly steps over to his father’s recliner. The entire family gasped in disbelief then cheered until young Justin began to cry from the loud screeches emanating from the near toothless mouth of Grandma Gloria.
Because most babies begin walking between nine and twelve months (although it is common to begin even later), Justin’s mother, Jennifer was all too pleased to share her great news with other mothers in their Mommy and Me class. Despite her son “kinda sorta” walking only twelve hours prior, Jennifer let all the unfortunate mothers of babies not yet walking that her son’s advanced physical achievement is not all roses. “Trust me ladies,” Mrs. Davis offered, much to the chagrin of the mothers who were throwing up in their mouths, “once your baby starts walking, it’s a game changer. I was up all night baby proofing. Does anyone want to sign up for a baby soccer cla…oh sorry, I forgot, your babies just crawl around. I’m so used to him walking around at such a young age, I think all babies are as advanced as my Justin. Walk Justy…walk and show the other kiddy widdies how to do it.”
As Justin grew into a toddler then a very average young boy, Mrs. Davis continued to remind her friends of Justin’s unbelievably early walking prowess. There were very few conversations that didn’t revert to the start of Justin’s walking. The sight of a baby crawling, a person on crutches or even the birth of a baby giraffe was enough to ask anyone within an arm’s reach when her son/daughter started walking. “She talks about the damn kid walking when he was eight months old all the time. He’s going to college next year for goodness sake,” remarked friend Marcy Rosenbluth. “It’s bizarre, I must get asked at least twice a week. I have three kids, lucky I remember their birthdays let alone what month they started walking.”
Now a gangly 5’9” seventeen year-old, Justin is actually just a typical walker. His two and a half foot stride is average for someone with his length legs and his back is hunched over a bit more than the normal teenage slacker. He’s able to start and stop walking with relative ease and his standing ability is slightly above the norm as he recently stood for nearly an hour at last week’s high school football game. Additionally, Justin can walk a little less than 3 miles per hour which his mother believes should qualify him for the Summer Olympics although it is typical of most human beings.
When questioned about his abnormally early walking age, his friends aren’t in awe like Justin’s mother. “I guess he’s a decent walker. He’s got a pretty nice gait and seems to be able to avoid walking into people and objects for the most part. He can carry his book bag while he walks which I suppose is somewhat impressive,” added lifelong pal Andy “Cheez Wiz” Wiznewski who thinks he may have started walking at fifteen months but insists he is unable to actually remember his first steps.
Also thought to be incredibly verbally advanced by saying “Dada” at eleven months old, Justin now communicates among his peers with a series of incoherent mumblings and monosyllabic grunts.