As parents, we have a front row seat when it comes to seeing that magic. While I try to take advantage of learning opportunities with my son whenever we are together, it never ceases to amaze me how much he just knows without intentional instruction. Just this past weekend my husband was showing Ev pictures of animals and after looking at a picture of an elephant, Ev looked at me and said “el-la-sent” before either my husband or myself had a chance to tell him what it was. Apparently, he was listening when I’ve pointed them out at the zoo and filed it away in his brain. And at bath time the other night when the water was apparently too warm (mommy’s mistake), he immediately bent down and started blowing on the water, something we have taught him to do when his food is too hot. An 18-month-old took a process that he has found to work and adjusted it to a new experience. That’s problem solving! And that’s the magic of children.
An equally magical experience for me was with my friends’ babies, twin boys who decided to arrive eight weeks early. Although the boys are progressing beautifully, they are in the NICU so that they can concentrate on just growing right now. They spend most of their time in a little bed that can be covered to trap heat. I went to visit last Friday when they were three days old. When my friend, their mother, and I walked in to their NICU room, one was crying. I walked over and started talking to the baby in my calmest, quietest voice and reached into his little “box” through the arm hole and gave him his pacifier. But he was still a little upset about something. My friend walked over and started saying his name and reached in to rub his head and he immediately stopped crying and what’s more, turned his tiny head towards her. It blows my mind that an infant that is three days old and 8 weeks early already knows who his mom is. How magical is that?