Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Scientifically speaking, he's a miracle

Both my husband and I are somewhat technical types.

We are big on gadgets. He’s a sound recordist and mixer. I fly airplanes. We are both fascinated by how things work.

And we both agree that, from a technical standpoint, watching our son develop is one of the most remarkable things we have ever witnessed.

We all love our children truly, madly and deeply. Each milestone they reach – the first smile, step, word – makes our heart swell with wonder and gratitude. But imagine, just for a moment, that you could put aside your emotional investment in your child and, for purely scientific purposes, observe it learn and develop.

Would you not be blown away by the sheer width, depth and breadth of knowledge and skills that this creature, this fledgling human adult, must acquire on the path to maturity?

The thing about parenting – the thing that makes it such an all-consuming, indescribably wonderful endeavor - is that it provides you with knowledge you never even knew you lacked.

I didn’t know so many things before Graham was born.

I didn’t think about the complex physicality of the human body and how our arms and legs, fingers and toes must be trained to work in synchronicity to master balance and movement.

I never really considered that our every mode of communication - from looks and smiles and winks to cries and grunts and words are part of an elaborate system of socialization that must learned, step by painstaking step.

I knew – I had been told – that having a child would inspire musings on life and love and miracles. But I had always seen human beings as the sum of their parts.

I never knew that the parts themselves could hold me in their thrall. That the dear, wee arms and legs and eyes and ears and lips, as they grew and strengthened and found their purpose, would each reveal itself as a separate and technically perfect miracle.

There are so many reasons to have children. Many of them are articulated by writers and poets every day and many of them go without saying.

But for someone like me, someone who hungers for technical knowledge, who finds beauty and comfort in order and science and nature and how things work, watching my son grow and observing the glorious complexity and functionality of the body he inhabits, has been an unexpected revelation.



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26 comments:

ewe are here said...

Watching my wee one learning to walk has been fascinating (and a little horrifying, the little terror) this past month, absolutely fascinating. It really is remarkable all the things they have to learn to 'become'.

Lovely post.

shay said...

Thanks for the reminder!
Don't ever lose this joy in him. It can get lost under the enormity of parenting:)

Happy New year!

sky girl said...

Well said!

GoMommy said...

So true! I'm not a gadget girl, but sometimes I look at their little hands and feet while they are still (and that's rare), and I'm amazed that these fat, little toddler paws accomplish so much in a day-not to mention a week or month or year! Being a mom is hard work, but it's also the best job in the world!

Suzanne said...

It is amazing! Sometimes I think about all the things my body does without one bit of effort on my part -- breathing, thinking, seeing, hearing -- and I am thankful for every day all those functions work properly!

Tot's Mom said...

The two photos tell us all. How a baby grows and learns all the balancing, coordination & motor skills along the way. It is certainly a joy to watch as a parent. ;)

Mighty Morphin' Mama said...

Isn't it incredible!? I watch my children in awe everyday, toddlerhood is such an amazing time of discovery for child and parent and I am often held speechless by each new feat!

MommyTime said...

Isn't it interesting how the things that fascinate us in our kids reflect things about us too? I'm a words person (lit prof), and I never cease to be amazed by the process of language acquisition. It's incredible to me that kids' brains can figure out the rules of a language just from hearing it spoken. And I love watching it develop. Thanks for the reminder about all the other incredible things going on in their bodies too! (And thanks for stopping by my little blogging corner.)

Rachel said...

This was such a darlin' post!! They are miracles and absolutely confounding!
Very well put!!

Pennies In My Pocket said...

I am right there with you on this post. My baby girl was born 9 weeks early and had a rough beginning. We were CONSTANTLY amazed with the miracles of her development. To watch her on the 'outside' instead of inside the womb was beyond mind blowing. I'm looking forward to being amazed every step of her life!

Great post!

~melody~

Amy U. said...

What a beautiful post. Something to look forward to (someday)!

Assertagirl

Jen said...

This is such a great reminder. What I also love is seeing my kids with the same affinities I have! That is a huge "wow" for me, when I see them drawn to the same things I like.

Badness Jones said...

It is amazing....and we forget too often what miracles they are. Great post.

OHmommy said...

What a great reminder of the miracles we encounter every day. You are right, there are so mnay more things that I know and appreciate now.

:)

Laura said...

Oh so true. Great post!

I answered your challenge regarding writing about discipline...it is a bit of a crazy, un centred post...but the best I could do!

Cheers!

Family Adventure said...

Excellent reminder to stop and appreciate. Each and every day.

Heidi

Sandra said...

This is such a great post. I love the way you described it ... so so so true. They are incredible, facinating beings.

linds said...

I agree with everything you just wrote. Watching my son grow up and develop is the most amazing thing. Babies are fascinating!

MBA Mommy said...

This is sweet. I remember thinking...what have I ever done to deserve such a gift?! The answer is...not enough. But becoming a mom somehow makes you want to do more, be better, make the world a kinder, gentler place for the perfect person you've brought into it.

Mac and Cheese said...

Back when I was childless, I used to wonder why my one mommy friend was always pointing out every single mini-milestone that her son achieved. Now that I have seen this first-hand with my own daughter, I fully understand her excitement. There is nothing boring about it when it's your own child.

onthegomom said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting!

What a great post and blog! I have read several entries and will be back!!!

Kimmylyn said...

It truly is amazing. I love everything about being a mom and watching them unfold into "people" is a true blessing.

mamatulip said...

Love this post.

(I nominated you for a Canadian Blog Award. Good luck!)

Karen MEG said...

Hubby and I both have scientific backgrounds, and our kids never cease to amaze us with the things that they do and, increasingly the things that they SAY. Thanks for this wonderful post that articulates perfectly how children are really modern day miracles, each and every one of them!

kittenpie said...

it's true - it dawned on me why parents can't stop talking about their children and the amazing! things they can do - like eat solid food and gurgle! Because watching how far they come, how many, many things they need to master, it IS quite amazing.

C said...

Surfed in via Karen's blog. What a beautiful post. Great blog! :)