Tuesday 8 July 2008

Baby After Two Weeks

I must admit to finding Baby fascinating.
Woe betide that I'm simply studying her for the purpose of writing about her, but let's face it, that was bound to happen.

She's the first case I'll ever have of actually following, step by step, human cognitive development.

Really, she is tiny. Until you actually hold her, it's hard to believe she's real. But perfectly formed. She has dry skin, but apparently Olive oil does the trick.

Babies aren't as difficult as I thought they would be. She doesn't cry when I hold her, though it does worry me sometimes, well not so much worry, but slightly disconcert me when I contemplate what she's living through right now. Because you can see it in her eyes.

What's all this that's happening?

Because that's what her life is like right now. There's a sound reason why the human brain pretty much wipes the memory in full shortly before the third birthday. What the human brain has just been through, is pretty traumatic. We don't need to carry through life the memories of how our brains first started to master things.

Every day is full of strange new experiences for her. And she's utterly helpless. It took her two days to realise that the way to stop the pain in her stomach was to put her mouth round the teat of the bottle. All these sights, these sounds. Lot's of things in front of her to master that are going to be traumatic.

So far, she can pull her mittens off by herself. After ten days, I think that shows quite a bit of cognitive intelligence. But I reflect on just how big a step working out how to use those limbs of hers is going to be.

God, it must all be total confusion. Not just WHO are we, WHAT are we? Does she even have an idea yet she's one of us? I'm not sure she does. She focuses, all well and good. And going and singing, 'Who's a nicey, wicey little *******, who's a nicey wicey little babe?', all gets her gurgling and smiling, and she responds well to being stroked on the cheek, and having her nose poked, so I guess she does respond to bonding. I think that this point it really is purely rudimentary. Her thought processes really are at the start.

Each thought we have is the result of all the ones that went before. Well, she's at the start. Right now, she can't really distinguish between people. And to be fair, she hasn't met many yet.

When you hold her, it's as if she really is just made of flesh, with no bones inside. She's so soft, but so warm to the touch.

And I look at her and think, I'm sure it's not much fun being a small person, but it's sad to think that one day you'll be a big person.

That you're going to be messed around by men, you're going to get hurt, you're going to make mistakes, you're going to have people do horrible things to you, use you, and you're going to do all those things back.

That one day you won't be an innocent baby in my arms, you'll be a hardened, calloused, cynical, adult.
Just like we all are.

And I find that so sad.


Anonymous said...

Nice to see the baby again. There will lot's of fun watching her grow up :-)

Anonymous said...

Baby is adorable. Imagine if you had one of your own!

Anonymous said...

Babies are adorable, everyone of them. True little miracles and so dependent on the adults.
Baby skin is so soft and so perfect.
Now don't be dwelling on the bad things, just think about the good things to come and keeping her safe to develop into a wonderful human being.

Anonymous said...

Yep, I have to say I'd love a couple more daughters, lol.

Anonymous said...

Babies. She is probably not even quite sure what is and what isn't her yet.

Don't right her off though, she may well retain a sense of optimism and idealism and hey she is a girl!

That's got to count for something ^_^

Anonymous said...

Write. Don't write her off...

Anonymous said...

I'm with Moggs. The post was great, except for the calloused, hardened bit. If you honestly think that's where she's heading, you should leave her alone.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Crushed, hope and faith are the only things that keep us rearing these little ones with any true love and affection. We're only blameless once in our lives, give her that before you project the sins of the world on her tiny shoulders.

Anonymous said...

She looks like she is yawning - have you been spouting your theories to her already? *winks*

Anonymous said...

CherryPie- I think so, yes. Actually, she's a lot of fun now.
She's very expressive.

Nunyaa- I have been. Yes, I'd like one, but then again, it's a big responsibility. I guess this provides a good way for me to get my head around the idea.

jmb- This is the scary thing. You fnd yourself thinking, how did ANYONE survive in caveman times?

Because there's so much you need to know.
About the correct way to hold her and stuff.

I'm sure she will. I think she's going to grow up quite strong minded.

Ginro- Well, I'd quite like little Isildur and Anarion. And a little Arwen too.

Moggs- No, they say a lot of the recognising faculties kick in after six weeks.
After six months, most of the reasoning and momory processes start to really form.

No, she won't be wriiten off. She has a lot of love around her.

Ms S- I know, but I just think 'I was a baby once'. And you can't help but just be sad. Because she will have hard times. She will get hurt.
You want to protect her, but you can't.

Helen- Its not so much the sins of the world. Its the pain of it.
She looks so sweet and vulnerable now.
You just wish she could stay that way.

You realise looking at her just how ingrained it is in us to love them.

Mutley- No, I was cooing at her like broody girl...

I like singing to her, actually. I make up little baby songs.

No, I will start her education in a few years, I think...;)

Anonymous said...

she is teh cutest thing ever. All babies ave this aura of innocense surrounding them, and you cannot but totally adore and love them.

I think its a primal instinct of wanting to protect them from all the harshness of the world.

Its amazing that one day she'll be all grown up, and will one day take part in the revolution 2025... :D

Anonymous said...

Actually, I find little innocent about childhood. Sometimes, innocence is an act of defiance--knowing what's there and willfully choosing a path that one understands as the more moral; which almost always is the road that doesn't get us what we want. I see children as purely id, with no superego to enforce mores (whatever those are).

Perhaps the best way to record her cognitive development over the years is to literally record it with an inexpensive tape player. You can upload the tapes onto your computer and convert them into mp3 files. It would be an interesting twenty-year project.

Anonymous said...

No Crushed, You can't always protect them, or even always be there to try.

The best you can do is equip them as much as possible to do better than just survive. Sometimes that means standing back and letting them try to fly on their own.

Teach them independance , resillience, and help nurture the optimism, or just plain stubborness, needed to just keep trying.

Anonymous said...

Mogs, I love your comment and am heading to your blog for more of your wisdom!

Anonymous said...

Sorry Mrs S. I have no blog. Just cat call from the sidelines on other people's ;-)

Anonymous said...

Moggs, that is truly our loss!

Thanks for the follow-up comment. I was a bit disappointed when I clicked to find no blog though I have to say.

All the best.

Anonymous said...

Crashie- It must be, because I certainly feel it.

She might be a BIT young for hat, but here's hoping :)

X-dell- Well morality, if you think about it, is a cognitive development, the realisition that strength is in numbers and self-interest is actually best served, as an individual member of a collective species, by the virtue we call altruism. Though I would also say a certain altruism is genetic.

I've doing a fair bit of research on Wikipedia on development stages to watch for :)
After six months, it gets interesting.

Recording her is certainly an idea, Might do that actually.

Moggs- Well she has a stubborn bugger for an adopted uncle, that's for sure.
I think she'll be OK. She's got poeople to look out for her.

Ms S, meet Moggs, Moggs meet Ms S.

Anonymous said...

Mrs S. Sorry. I spend most of my spare 'goofing off' time in sl. I got interested in the blogs here because I know a couple of the members.

Once you read a post well sometimes you just can't help joining in ;-)

Not sure what I would blog about anyway. Second life maybe... *grins*