When I first placed her down on the floor alone, about a week ago, she did better than I expected, but not as well as I'd hoped after all of the little mini-sessions she'd had on the couch cushion next to me.
Though she looks pretty solid there in the moment, I had to let her hold my hand for several seconds before she could find a precarious balance, and only held it for just long enough that I could quickly snap three photos before needing to drop the camera and help her topple gently onto her side.
We've continued on, undaunted, with our practice sessions, but I've been more careful not to rush her since. I figure that natural equilibrium is something that can really only come with time.
Then, today, something miraculous happened. I laid her in a reclined chair to relax and watch the goings-on of lunchtime, only to find- as I glanced over while eating- that she was sitting forward.
She had pulled herself up by reaching for a dangling toy, but was holding the position largely by herself.
Though she didn't seem to think it was a particularly big deal, I was shocked and ecstatic to see such an unexpected explosion of independence.
Once my lunch was consumed, I brought her into the living room and set her down on the floor again to see what she could do. The change in her was breathtaking to behold.
She needed hardly any spotting once situated, and- while still a bit shaky- had an awareness-of-self I'd never observed in her before.
When her over-eager reaching caused her head to plummet towards the floor, she pulled back to counter the motion.
If she leaned too far to one side, she corrected to the other.
She managed three straight minutes this way before tipping over the first time, and perhaps five straight minutes after that.
That was about the limit of her stamina, and once fatigue set in she was tipping left-and-right, so we converted to floor play on her back for a much deserved (and needed) break.
Clearly, she's got more work ahead of her to master the skill, but it seems that all of the necessary components have finally clicked into place to make it possible.
As I babbled on and on about how flabbergasting it all was, Tom joked to me that Mia must have installed an Operating System update overnight. I laughed, but at the same time, I marveled at how, really, she had done just that.
And, with much more flair than an iPhone could ever hope to.