Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Who's learning from whom?

Pa's a little spooked these days.

In the natural order of things, young children derive habits and characteristics from imitating their parents. Other traits they exhibit as part of their genetic heritage. But who's ever heard of parents copying their young 'uns?

That's Pa's question, because he's noticed that Mum is beginning to behave in ways that are suspiciously similar to Sonny's. There's that stretching thing, mainly. When Sonny wakes up, he never does it all at once. He goes through a rigorous series of stretches that involve shooting his arms into the air at certain angles and yawning noisily. Well, Mum is beginning to shake off sleep in almost exactly the same way - right down to the angles of the arms when they rocket skyward. Even the little half-yawns she does are like adult versions of Sonny's.

In an earlier post, we discussed how Mum had seemingly become psychically connected to Sonny - so that when he cried, she would feel an attack of colic coming on. That's still going on, but this behavioral mirroring brings things to a whole new level. Who's to say that her emotional maturity won't start to decline as she aligns it to that of our 10-week-old? Will her language skills take a dive? Or might she begin to sleep many more hours every day?

Admittedly, there are various plausible-enough explanations for Pa's observations. One, preferred by Mum, is that he's simply got it the wrong way round: It's Sonny who's yawning and stretching and so on like his mother, in a straight genetic pick-up. Pa, of course, claims these characteristics simply weren't there before - but he might simply not have noticed them till they began to remind him of Sonny. An even more prosaic explanation would be that the two sets of behaviour aren't even all that alike, and that Pa's simply seeing what isn't there.

He's not buying it. And, really, is it so hard to believe that parents can absorb a few mannerisms, cocks-of-the-head or stretching patterns from their children? Why does it all have to be one-way traffic?There's no scientific reason that we've found to say it can't happen. Mum's not hung up over it and certainly doesn't think it makes her less her own person. It's even rather endearing, in a way - a further sign of the invisible ties that bind mother and child.

Well, make that visible ties, in this case.


joshuaongys said...

there're blogs with larger image header than mine haha but anyhow i got wat u mean.. i think i shall make another change.. haha.. appreciate ur voice =)

Cloudsters said...

All the best with improving your blog, Joshua!