As I bathed with Penelope today I watched as her thighs and little butt swayed and balanced her upright as she sat in the tub of water. As the tub filled with each inch the water tried gently to carry her weight away and knock her over. The slippery tub is no match for her, for she learned long ago how to stand up and keep from falling (though I keep telling her it's not a good idea.)
It was while watching her balance (both sitting and standing) I thought to myself that babies are at the most important and crucial stage of life. It is when a human learns absolutely everything that is essential to live and thrive. Trust, warmth, food, security, love, balance, walking, communicating, and eventually care of ones own self.
This is no new realization. There have been many studies about how from birth to 6 is what sets up a child for his or her whole life. But once in a while it just hits me. The wonder in her eyes and the newness everyday brings. Penelope is pointing, waving, taking wobbly first steps, and communicating her needs. She is learning everything she needs to ever know. She curls up warm against my breast every day and every night (all night) to sleep, and that is also how she knows I'll always love her.