From toddle to totter

Peter Leith is 90 and has seen a lot of the world and a myriad changes – many good, some bad. Here, he embraces the wonder of youth and the circle of life in another of his Aspects of Ageing series.


The concentration on the toddler’s face is intense. Her arms are widespread for balance, each step is an adventure and an achievement.

At one stage she looks up at you and her tentative smile turns into a ‘look-at-me-I’m-walking’ grin and then she concentrates again.

You bend down, as far as you can without falling over yourself, and hold your arms out towards her.

Two steps away, she looks up again. Her face breaks into an all-embracing grin of triumph and she throws herself into your waiting arms, wriggling with the joy of her own achievement.

You hug her to you, murmur loving nonsense words of congratulation into her hair and try to control your watering eyes.

The wheel has come full circle … again.

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Written by Peter Leith


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