Just spent three hours in Infant Toddler class. I’m not teaching the class, nor am I a student in it, though at moments I felt like both. I’m learning about teaching this kind of class, because this is my new job. (which I am very excited about, by the way.)
Wish I had taken this class before having Alden, in some ways! It truly is amazing that most people who have babies haven’t spent almost any time learning about babies (other than, we think an inordinate amount about, and do all kinds of crazy internet research about, what WE plan to do, or not do… what we plan to do …. for them, with them, in spite of them, because of them, around them…) But almost no time getting ready to know about and understand and be ready to observe what THEY are going to do.
I observed Alden in minute detail during his first year! I have the crazy nursing journals and twenty-five photos printed (PRINTED mind you) of attempts, all within one propped-on-the-couch session– to catch that fleeting two-month smile. And yet, I missed so much. We all do. We always do. We’re so focused on ourselves!
I’ve been reading some really wonderful blogs about being with infants and toddlers lately– if you aren’t familiar with Magda Gerber, or the RIE institute she founded, check out her work. Janet Lansbury’s blog is a great resource, too, that draws on Gerber’s work.
Among other things, Magda Gerber said this: Having Respect for the world is when you allow people to be what they are.
Including, I guess, ourselves. Mama, baby, all of us.