Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Evolution of a Beautiful Mind

The recesses of my daughter's mind are too much to grasp, sometimes. Though I am so much older than she is, have collected experiences with people and situations, I have to admit that Abigail has the power to amaze and surprise me, unlike most everything in this world. She's an open book in her innocence, but so much of what's written in it, the artifacts of her developing consciousness, is still a mystery to me. Mostly, I think, because she is absorbing and learning so much, and the way the human mind works is absolutely fascinating.

Abbie's creativity and understanding of basic things is quick and at times more complex than I would expect. Those who have never watched a kid grow will not be able to understand what I mean. But those who watch their babies develop and evolve, day after day, one amazing step after the next, know why I marvel at the dazzling complexities of human imagination and understanding.

I don't know how to appropriately depict what I am trying to say. Every day, Abbie does or says things that I immediately want to write about. I wish I could, because I don't want to forget any of these little, gigantic milestones, and how happy and excited they make me feel.

Today, for example, Abbie learned the first two letters of the alphabet, A and B. We were playing with her alphabet puzzle, and while she was putting the pieces together, I was naming the letters. "A", "T", "W", "G".... Soon she got bored, and went to play with her bear, but when she saw me getting the puzzle pieces off the floor and back in their box, she grabbed the letter A, and, handing it to me, she said "A". Just like that. "A". I said: "Are you calling this letter "A", Abbie?" And she said "A!". Then she grabbed the letter "B", and dropping it in the box, said "B". I was laughing so hard, she laughed too, though I doubt she knew why. I felt so proud.

A few nights ago, while having dinner, another surprise: she patted her chest and triumphally blurted out: "ME!". She did it several times, "Me! Me!" -- she pointed at her dad and said "Daddy!", then patted her chest again and said "Me!". Not Abbie, as she normally does, rather "me". Her eyes reflected the ecstasy she was feeling at having grasped such a concept, she was absolutely lustrous with her own achievement. That was another great moment, for us, in all its simplicity and charm.

The funny part of it all is that I have no idea where she picks up some of the things that she is learning. The alphabet is something else, because I do show her the letters and name them to her. But something like identifying herself as "me" falls into a different category: I don't go around the house thumping my chest and calling myself "me". To me, it's simply amazing.

It's something out of this world, the conceptual blending, the mental mechanisms that suddenly seem to bind together and integrate all these elements into complex ideas. It's the evolution of my daughter's mind, and I utterly love it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love reading your adventures, Abigail! I have a baby boy your same age, and it's a trip to watch him grow!