Wonders of Babies

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Mara when she was a newborn.

Babies are absolutely wonderful. They are miracles of nature!

Her name is Mara and she’s the love of my life.

The wonders of babies don’t surprise me. After all, I’ve had three of my own and more recently, a grandbaby girl. Babies are absolutely wonderful gifts from God.

I still remember when me and my wife were expecting our first baby and although more than three decades ago, I still remember the excitement that we both experienced. Back then, for one reason or another, we didn’t rely on obstetrics ultrasound to find out whether the baby was a boy or a girl. It turned out to be a girl and she gave us our first grandchild.

And the cycle of life goes on…now our baby has her own baby. It was a little overwhelming for her in the beginning but my wife was teaching her somewhat what to do. After all, young people nowadays has a lot of resources to lean on, primarily the internet. We were on our own before, except for some tips from our own parents. And there’s of course the pediatrician telling all what the new moms need to know.

Every birth and every baby is an absolute miracle. I remember our firstborn’s smell. She smelled so good. I noticed a layer of soft, downy hair over her body. This hair, known as lanugo, disappeared after about a couple of weeks.

One of the wonders of babies is that her poop didn’t have any smell. I learned later her poop is a black, tar-like stuff called meconium which is made up of mucus, fluid from the womb, and anything else she digested while inside her mom. It doesn’t yet have the gut bacteria that make poop smelly.

And that first baby gave us our first grandbaby. Her name’s Mara. She’s absolutely adorable. We watched her from being a newborn to now, a healthy 15 month old toddler. She’s a Corona virus baby, born two months after California’s imposed quarantining in March of 2020.

She has boundless energy quickly sapping our meager supply with her hyperactivity. But of course, we don’t mind. It’s just that we need to be constantly on the watch, when we babysit her, for any safety hazard. And a lot are safety hazards: a small piece of hard object on the floor, a pointed corner of the table, drawers without a safety lock.

And one amazing thing about being around babies: I lose my decorum, I start acting like a bumbling and babbling toddler, speaking in a high pitched tone, and not observing the English grammar in the process.

The amazing thing is that Mara makes me fit. That’s right! She started to walk at 11 months old. That’s four months ago. Now, she likes to walk a lot, climb the stairs, and reach out for objects on the shelves and on top of tables. Especially climbing the stairs. She needs to be helped when she climb the stairs and that activity provides some much needed exercise to my aging legs. Thanks my granddaughter. I need that.

I love to watch Mara dance while watching those Baby Boomers performing dance set to at 1980s music.  She’s now 16 months old, very active, very inquisitive. She’s growing so fast. And I’m really happy for her because of her love for books. She spends  hours either poring through them or asking everyone to read for her. I’m hoping it will be a good start for her to be somebody – an author maybe. Ha ha ha! A grandpa just wishing the best for his sweet granddaughter.

My granddaughter is now almost seventeen months old. She had grown taller, had gained weight, is now more stable in how she walks, could now say a lot more, and she loves books more. On the other hand, she cries less, puts less tantrums, and sleeps less.

Like what I said before, my baby now has a baby of her own. She is my oldest and she is half my age now. I fully realized the wonders of babies when she was one and now that she has a baby, she fully realizes it as well.

I remember the many times of feedings, diaper changes, sleepless nights and the deprivation of sleep that comes with the performance of those. But I have a hard time remembering a lot about her when she was a baby. A bit and pieces here and there but now that I am a grandpa, it’s been ages since she was that innocent baby on a crib, cooing and crying and what not. Somehow, interacting with Mara brings a snippet of how Giselle (yes, her name is Giselle, my firstborn) was. They look very similar, mother and daughter.

It seems time flies and this is true in how my daughter used to be that innocent baby and now, she has her own family. The many nights that we took care of her seemed to have gone like a snap of a finger, like it all happening in a twinkling of an eye. Comforting her when she was crying, feeding her when she was hungry, singing lullabies to her, changing her clothes, getting her dressed, bathing her, brushing her hair, washing her clothes, carrying her, cutting her fingernails, the countless routines of raising a baby, and that doesn’t include the efforts to earn a good living to be able to put a roof over her head and food on the table.

But it’s all worth it. Now, the child rearing had borne fruit and history repeats itself. And she will raise a generation of her own children who will in the future raise their own.

Yes, the wonders of babies: they give a tantrum and we are smiling as a reaction, say our baby talks, labor to find out what’s wrong with the little one. Is she hungry?; is her diaper wet?;  is she sleepy? Tell me little one what we can do for you and we will do it willingly, and yes, with a smile and inexhaustible patience.

And why not? Her smile wipes our tiredness or hunger, anything away. And her shrieks of laughter make us euphoric. I can hug her forever.

 

My granddaughter Mara is now 2 years and 2 months old. She is fast growing into a beautiful young girl, vivacious, and one who loves life so much. She is continually a wonder of a baby that is always a delight to her grandpa and grandma.

It’s been more than 2 years since I posted on this page of Mara. 14 months had flown fast, lots of things happened to Mara, she had grown taller, continually adjusts to the changes in her body as a fast-growing baby who is normal. Thank God, she is very healthy although sometimes she likes to throw a little bit of tantrums normal to babies of her age.

Mara is now 2 months short of 3 years old, an inquisitive bubbly baby, active, energetic full of life. At birth, Mara’s brain contained 100 billion neurons, roughly as many nerve cells as there are stars in the Milky Way, and almost all the neurons the brain will ever have. 

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