Recap for Blog 33 – So that’s why I’m constantly hungry!: When Zani learns that an expectant mother’s feelings about her unborn child influences its ability to connect with others, feel safe, and even find learning easy, the penny drops in her brain. That may have been her own childhood reality, but her baby will grow up knowing how much it is loved – every single day.
Jake has been away on a business trip for a few days, so I have lots of time on hand to read, reread and marvel about what is happening. Even though we have identical files, I enjoy reading Jake’s file most, because his drawings make everything so much more real.
To understand the last point in Jake’s notes, I have to look it up in the physiology and anatomy book I bought in the children’s books section at the bookstore (the colourful pictures make the concept easier to grasp). What it basically tells me is that the forebrain is the thinking brain, the midbrain the emotional brain and the hindbrain the survival brain. I also note that even though all three parts are taking shape at the moment, each part of the brain has a window of opportunity when they go through a growth spurt. From Day 1 of Week 1 until birth and from birth to roughly 14 months of age is the critical window of opportunity for the baby to develop physically to be able to survive.
Dr. Melodie de Jager’s book Brain development, milestones and learning also explains that the baby’s physical development forms a foundation for the emotional brain and the thinking brain to expand on. Yet another reminder that even though genetic coding is determining baby’s development, it is my and Jake’s responsibility to stay healthy and informed.
Quick SMS to Jake to say hi and to tell him that Baby is in Week 5 of the 23-month critical window of opportunity for physical development – the foundation of all development.
Jake: Gives new meaning to what Russell Crowe said in Gladiator – what we do in life echoes in eternity!
Jake idolises Russell Crowe and quotes the man at the drop of a hat. I just roll my eyes. Puh-leez!
I fetch a bunch of grapes and settle back in bed to discover more.
After his last point, Jake has pencilled a note in the margin: Radio interview – withdrawal reflex. For a second, it does not make sense, but then I remember what he told me about the developmental importance of the withdrawal reflex to sensitise the skin, nervous system and brain. I am constantly in awe of the life unfolding inside me and the intelligence that has sparked the process. Just how does it happen? How does a cell know it is to become a part of the cornea, semi-circular canals, the Vagus nerve or the palate? How does it know which genes to use and which to ignore at any given moment?
I can’t wait to see what comes next and read on. Tomorrow will be the first day of Week 6.
So that’s why I’m constantly hungry! This little human is eating all my food! Have to fetch more grapes. And nuts too.
I close the file, and then my eyes. And, in absolute wonder, I fall asleep – what feels like a deep, deep sleep.